Ellen Degeneres sexual assault
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Ellen DeGeneres shared her experience of sexual assault as a teenager with fellow talk show host David Letterman. 

DeGeneres is one of the most philanthropic celebrities in Hollywood and gives back immensely. She also supports minorities and is a progressive ally to everyone. She revealed she wanted to share her story to empower other women and survivors of sexual assault. 

The comedian opened up about her heartbreaking story on Letterman's Emmy-nominated Netflix series. DeGeneres is known for spreading laughs and positivity on her daytime TV show. Her story proves that even the lightest of individuals have dark stories that affect them on a daily basis. 

DeGeneres will share her story on an episode in Letterman's second season, but Entertainment Tonight shared the story ahead of the premiere. 

DeGeneres opened up about the traumatic incident. She said that her stepfather molested her when she was 15 or 16 years old. During the same time her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, her stepfather would grope DeGeneres and use her mother's cancer diagnosis as an excuse. 

"It’s a really horrible, horrible story, and the only reason I’m actually going to go into detail about it is because I want other girls to not ever let someone do that," DeGeneres said. 

The season two trailer of My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman shows that Letterman has a slew of A-list interviewees. 

In the trailer, DeGeneres says, "I think we covered a lot more than I ever intended on covering." The 61-year-old goes into detail about her experience as a way to empower other women and those who come forward. 

"That’s the only reason I think it’s important to talk about it, because there’s so many young girls and it doesn’t matter how old you are. When I see people speaking out, especially now, it angers me when victims aren’t believed because we just don’t make stuff up." DeGeneres said in her interview. 

"And I like men, but there are so many men that get away with so much."

Letterman's Netflix series My Next Guest Needs No Introduction returns on May 31. 

In the first season of his Netflix talk show, Letterman opened the series with an interview with Barack Obama. For the second season, he will speak with Kanye West, Melinda Gates, Tiffany Haddish, and, of course, DeGeneres. 

The TV personality also goes into her relationship with her mother following the assault. She revealed that while her mother tried to be supportive, she also didn't fully believe the teenager when she came forward. 

"I always have taken care of her my whole life. So I just kept taking care of her. I didn’t really let it get to me. Until recently, I kind of went, 'I wish I would have been better taken care of. I wish she would have believed me.' And she’s apologetic, but you know…."

The talk show host has always supported minorities and spoken out on issues that matter most to her. 

DeGeneres first opened up about her assault to Allure in 2005, but didn't reveal her relationship with her stepfather and didn't go into as many details. Now, in a climate where women who come forward aren't always believed, DeGeneres felt she was in a place to make a difference. "It is just time for us to have a voice. It’s time for us to have power," she said. 

People and organizations reached out with messages of support on Twitter. 

The Hunting Ground, a film about sexual assault on college campuses, sent a tweet of support to the comedian. "<3 We believe survivors. We believe and support @TheEllenShow."

They also shared a tweet from End Rape on Campus, an account that also sent DeGeneres words of encouragement. "We believe you. It is not your fault. You are not alone. You have our support, Ellen." 

An organization that fights to end child abuse also sent DeGeneres an uplifting tweet. 

The tweet reads, "Thank you to @TheEllenShow for speaking up so courageously about her own experience and in support of believing survivors of sexual violence. Every time a person steps forward to share their experience, they reassure others that it's not their fault and that help is available."

By sharing her story, she empowers more individuals to come forward if they face a similar tragic circumstance. 

DeGeneres is used to being the interviewee as well as the interviewer. 

The longtime daytime talk show host is normally the one grilling her interviewees instead of being in the hot seat. DeGeneres always makes her guests feel comfortable and at home and befriends just about everyone. When given the opportunity to tell her story on Letterman's show, she opened up and will surely help countless survivors by doing so. 

DeGeneres shared this clip from the upcoming episode about a moment early on in her career as a stand-up comic. 

The first time she was booked on a big show, she was so nervous that at one point she forgot to put her car's emergency break on and it rolled down a hill in Los Angeles. The audience laughed as she recalled running down the hill to catch her runaway car. 

"I’m a big fan of David @Letterman. It was an honor to be on his @Netflix show, even though he didn’t introduce me," DeGeneres joked in a tweet ahead of the series premiere. 

DeGeneres was one of the first openly lesbian talk show hosts and is an ally for the LGBTQ community. 

The 61-year-old supports all LGBTQ causes. In this trailer for Gillette, a transgender man shaves for the first time. "Gillette, this is nothing short of incredible," DeGeneres wrote. Earlier this year, she shared a boycott of hotels that were run by the kingdom of Brunei because of a gay sex stoning act that was still part of government policy there. 

Her courage in standing up for what she believes in and making people laugh along the way earned her the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2016.

Three years ago DeGeneres was awarded the high honor by former President Barack Obama. 

"Ellen DeGeneres has a way of making you laugh about something instead of at someone," Obama said. 

He thanked her for coming out in such a public way to raise awareness and allow others to challenge their own assumptions about the LGBTQ community. Now she is telling another story in a public way to help sexual assault survivors.