Constance Wu details her alleged experience with sexual assault in her forthcoming memoir, Making a Scene.
The 40-year-old Fresh Off the Boat star’s debut novel – releasing on 4 October – includes essays about her childhood in Richmond, Virginia, dealing with racism, and accounts of sexual assault and sexual harassment.
Warning: Some readers may find details in this article upsetting
In a new excerpt published by Vanity Fair, Wu goes into detail about the time she says she was raped in her 20s.
Identifying the man by the name of Ty, she said he was 36 when they met in New York. After their second date, she said that he took her up to his apartment to give her a gift, which quickly escalated to “some fooling around”.
“He took off his pants and started putting the condom on – an obvious signal for sex – which I did not want. So I said, ‘Oh gosh, I’m sorry, I’m not ready to have sex with you,’” she wrote.
“I said it clearly. But he merely smiled, as if he knew better, as if my vagina’s wetness was more telling than the words coming out of my mouth. He gently got on top of me and held my face in his hands. He kissed my lips, my forehead, and looked into my eyes.”
She continued: “He was being so tender. I repeated, as seriously as I could, ‘Really, I’m not ready for sex,’ my face flushing. He smiled at me again like I was a baby kitten, held me close, kissed me, gently moved my legs apart, and then he...did it anyway.”
Wu explained that it wasn’t until she wrapped filming on her 2018 romantic dramedy, Crazy Rich Asians, that she came to recognise what had happened to her nearly 20 years ago.
“The memory came back after I’d just finished a movie that would go on to be a huge success,” she explained.
She continued: “I’d spoken at colleges and on panels where people came to hear me and listened to what I said. I think that’s why the memory decided to resurface then. Because it was finally safe. I was financially and professionally secure. I’d reached a place in my life where people actually listened to me.
“I did not consent to sex. Maybe it wasn’t violent, but it was rape. Period.”
Making a Scene is scheduled to release on 4 October.
If you have been raped or sexually assaulted, you can contact your nearest Rape Crisis organisation for specialist, independent and confidential support. For more information, visit their website here.