Gabrielle Union Opens Up About The Darkest Time In Her Life

The following article includes mentions of sexual assault.

Gabrielle Union rose to fame as Isis in the smash 2000s film "Bring It On," before taking the lead in several subsequent projects. In addition to her career as an esteemed film and television actor, the "Being Mary Jane" star has always been an advocate for sexual assault victims.

Union has been very candid about her own experience of being sexually assaulted at age 19, having previously detailed the incident in her 2017 book "We're Going to Need More Wine." Union revealed that the horrific attack happened at gunpoint during a robbery at the Payless store where she was employed. "As he raped me, I began to hover over myself. I could see the whole room," she wrote. Adding, "I looked at that poor crying girl and thought, Things like this happen to bad people."

Now, the "Deliver Us from Eva" star is opening up about the lasting impact the assault has had on her mental health over a decade later.

Gabrielle Union says she 'not afraid' of anything

Actor Gabrielle Union has effusively advocated for sexual assault victims since revealing she was assaulted during her teenage years. Union, who is currently married to NBA player Dwyane Wade, is now revealing how she overcame what she calls "lowest moment of her life."

"At 19, I made a decision about who I was going to be in this world and what I would stand for and not stand for," Union said during an appearance on the "Keep It!" podcast. She goes on to describe how the attack — which she felt would result in her death — completely altered her stance on confronting so-called bad guys. "Moving forward, I just wasn't as afraid," she said. Adding, "I almost died like can I get any lower death is lower but the only thing standing between me and death is losing my soul because I'm afraid of losing my position or things or access or whatever."

Union's revelation on the "Keep It!" podcast wasn't the first time she has spoken about her experience. In fact, the actor previously told People why she continues speaking out. "Each time I tell the story is a revelation that I need to keep sharing since there's so many more victims than survivors," she explained. "They need to know healing is a process — a slow process like moving a boulder uphill with one hand tied behind your back, but there is hope."

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).