Last month, Mandy Moore — along with six other women — said she was psychologically abused by her ex-husband Ryan Adams in an interview with the New York Times. “He would always tell me, ‘You’re not a real musician, because you don’t play an instrument,’” she said at the time. “His controlling behaviour essentially did block my ability to make new connections in the industry during a very pivotal and potentially lucrative time — my entire mid-to-late 20s.” (In a statement, Adams called the article “upsettingly inaccurate.”)
Recently, Moore told Us Weekly that since the Times report was published, many women have reached out to share their own experiences of psychological abuse. “That’s something that I’ve really kind of taken out of this situation. I had no idea,” Moore said. “So many women reached out to me, echoing… that the idea that psychological and emotional [abuse] is often swept under the rug, or not addressed or not talked about, or not considered in the same category of just general abuse.”
She added, “I’ve just been really emboldened by the support that, I think, myself and the other women that have spoken out in this particular situation have received. It’s really heartening. And heartening to know that other women can look to it as an example as well. Like, ‘You’re not alone. You’re seen. You’re heard. You’re acknowledged. It’s real. And I’m so sorry.’”
According to the 2010 National Intimate Partner And Sexual Violence Survey conducted by the CDC, nearly half of both women and men in the US have “experienced psychological aggression by an intimate partner,” including behaviours such as name-calling, threats, humiliation, and control of activities. Research suggests 95% of men who abuse their partners physically also abuse their partners psychologically, and even if no physical abuse accompanies the psychological abuse, psychological abuse is still abuse and still harmful.
After the New York Times report was published, Moore described the abuse on the podcast WTF With Marc Maron. "It [was] an entirely unhealthy dynamic. I had no sense of self. I felt like I was drowning. It was so untenable and unsustainable and it was so lonely. I was so sad,” she said. "I couldn't do my job because there was a constant stream of trying to pay attention to this person who needed me and wouldn't let me do anything else.”