Evan Rachel Wood gave harrowing testimony to Congress Tuesday detailing her sexual abuse at the hands of an ex-partner, in an effort to support passage of the Survivors' Bill of Rights Act. She was raped by him while unconscious, she told a House Judiciary subcommittee, and she was "mentally and physically tortured until my abuser felt I had proven my love for them," the Westworld actress said, per the BBC. She described the torture as including "sick rituals of binding me up by my hands and feet," then being "beaten and told unspeakable things." She also described a second rape by another person, the Cut reports. The Survivors' Bill of Rights Act, which gives survivors statutory rights, has been passed at a federal level and in nine states; Wood and other advocates want to see it passed in all 50 states.
Wood, 30, said her abuse "altered the course of my life," leaving her "self-esteem and spirit ... broken. I was deeply terrified, and that fear lives with me to this day." She was ultimately diagnosed with PTSD, and she said she has also struggled with addiction, depression, self-harm, and thoughts of suicide as a result, Fox News reports. That's why the bill is so important, she said: "So often we speak of these assaults as no more than a few minutes of awfulness, but the scars last a lifetime. Even though these experiences happened a decade ago, I still struggle with the aftermath." She and other advocates are campaigning, among other things, for sexual assault victims to have access to "fair and efficient" rape kits and sexual assault counselors, and to have their rights explained to them clearly. Wood also appears in a new Funny or Die parody for the #MeToo movement, Slate reports. (Read more Evan Rachel Wood stories.)