On Monday, Lady Gaga finally confirmed she is engaged to her boyfriend Christian Carino during a speech at Elle's Women in Hollywood event, calling him her fiancé from the stage. But that wasn't the only intimate detail Gaga, née Stefani Germanotta shared during her speech. We know that clothing is never just clothing for Gaga, who has worn jaw-dropping designer gowns at all of A Star Is Born's many promotional events – but Monday night's award show was different.
The singer-actress wanted to make a different sort of statement with her look, and opened up about it during her acceptance speech as one of Elle's Women in Hollywood. In an excerpt of the speech on Elle, the singer explained why she chose to wear the oversized Marc Jacobs suit instead of one of the dresses her stylist pulled for her press tour. It was important to send a message – but also, Gaga says, she wanted to feel like herself.
"I tried on dress after dress today getting ready for this event, one tight corset after another, one heel after another, a diamond, a feather, thousands of beaded fabrics and the most beautiful silks in the world," Gaga said in her speech, admitting the process made her feel "sick to her stomach." It made her question what it actually meant to be a working woman in Hollywood. "We are not just objects to entertain the world," she said on stage. "We are not simply images to bring smiles or grimaces to people’s faces. We are not members of a giant beauty pageant meant to be pit against one another for the pleasure of the public."
After trying on 10 or so dresses, Gaga says her eyes landed on the "Marc Jacobs suit buried quietly in the corner," and she started to cry. "In this suit, I felt like me today," she explained on stage. "In this suit, I felt the truth of who I am well up in my gut. And then wondering what I wanted to say tonight become very clear to me."
The suit represented something powerful for the singer — the ability to own her own narrative. "As a sexual assault survivor by someone in the entertainment industry, as a woman who is still not brave enough to say his name, as a woman who lives with chronic pain, as a woman who was conditioned at a very young age to listen to what men told me to do, I decided today I wanted to take the power back. Today I wear the pants."
If you have experienced sexual violence and are in need of crisis support, please call theRAINN Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).