Stephanie Beacham:I Was Raped in My 20s

Daily Mail (London), March 14, 2016 | Go to article overview

Stephanie Beacham:I Was Raped in My 20s


Byline: Sam Creighton Showbusiness Reporter

DYNASTY star Stephanie Beacham has told of a devastating rape ordeal in her youth that she said had wrecked her life.

The actress, now 69, spoke publicly about the attack more than 40 years after it happened.

However, she said victims can sometimes be at fault if they fail to remove themselves from dangerous situations if they have the chance.

Miss Beacham refused to name her attacker but said the psychological damage led to the end of her relationship at the time, which she believes was heading for marriage.

The actress, best known for her roles in Dynasty alongside Dame Joan Collins and its spin-off The Colbys, said women in the 1970s had to develop strategies to avoid unwanted attention and even attacks from men. She told The Sunday Telegraph she had to be 'very fast on my toes' to avoid being molested and admitted 'it wasn't always possible'.

She added: 'That is why I sharpened my conversational ability - so men didn't think they could take advantage of me in any way. I had a PS5 note sewn into the lining of my coat and that was my getaway money. I can remember avoiding rape several times and a couple of times not.'

When asked for details about the ordeal, Miss Beacham added: 'I will, for my own brain, be more specific and say once, and it was in the very early Seventies. And that is fact.' Of the perpetrator, she would say only that he was 'not a theatrical person'.

She has never gone public about the attack until now - leaving it out of her 2011 autobiography Many Lives. She believes it resulted in longterm trauma and ended a relationship that at the time was on course for marriage.

Miss Beacham, who was marabout, ried to actor John McEnery from 1973 to 1978, said: 'I didn't know that that's what was causing it at the time.

'But absolutely. It caused me to break off a long-term relationship that probably should have been my marriage, because I couldn't admit to it, I felt it was my fault. No, it screwed up my life, definitely.' She added: 'It doesn't matter. The person I'm talking 'It wrecked my relationship' I hardly know that it's me. I've had so many traumas since, I sometimes feel I'm this wonderful vase that if you drop it it'll bounce because there's so much Araldite on it. …

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