Anthony Edwards is arguably best known for ER and Top Gun, but the actor has been an advocate for male victims of sexual assault for a number of years, lending his time to work with groups like Joyful Heart in an effort to raise awareness. It's only now that Edwards has come forward to share his own personal experience of molestation, admitting that he too is a victim of sexual assault. Anthony Edwards took to Medium to write a lengthy post about his life after sexual molestation at the age of 12.
Anthony Edwards revealed that the man in question is Producer/Director Gary Goddard (Masters of the Universe) while stating that he was like a "sick father figure" to the actor when he was a child. Late this week, the 55-year-old actor says the abuse started when he was 12-years old and that Goddard was mentoring him. Edwards says that Goddard, "quickly became a dominant force in my life," taking advantage of an emptiness in his home life. Anthony Edwards went on to say that pedophiles, "prey on the weak" and explained that his own father was emotionally unavailable due to undiagnosed PTSD from World War II.
Anthony Edwards says that he was too scared to come forward, which is common with victims of sexual abuse. As it turns out, Edwards was not the only one affected at the time as Gary Goddard sexually assaulted his friend as well. Edwards had this to say.
"My vulnerability was exploited. I was molested by Goddard, my best friend was raped by him - and this went on for years."
Edwards went on to explain why he did not come forward earlier and that he blamed himself for the incidents. He explains.
"One of the most tragic effects of sexual abuse in children is that the victims often feel deeply responsible - as if it is somehow their fault. With their sick form of control, abusers exploit a child's natural desire to bond."
While he didn't complain about Gary Goddard at the time, Anthony Edwards was able to talk to the director, face to face, 22 years ago, when he ran into him in an airport. Edwards said, "I was able to express my outrage at what he had done. He swore to his remorse and said that he had gotten help." Edwards says that he then felt a "temporary" sense of relief after he said what he'd wanted to say for years. It was only temporary as Anthony Edwards' rage came flying to the surface once again when Gary Goddard was accused of abuse again. The scandal that Edwards referenced is related to Michael Egan III, who claimed that he had been molested by X-Men director Bryan Singer. He also says that he had been abused by Goddard as well. Both lawsuits were later dismissed.
At the age of 51, Anthony Edwards says that he was referred to a therapist that specialized in childhood sexual abuse by some close friends. The actor admits that the therapy has given him the tools to talk that he wished that he would've had when he was 14-years old when his mother confronted him about Gary Goddard's reputation. He explains.
"At 51 years old, I was directed by a group of loving friends to a therapist who specializes in this kind of abuse. By processing my anger in a safe place with a professional, I was finally able to have the conversation that I wish I could have had with my mom when I was 14."
Though Anthony Edwards has helped out with various child molestation groups over the years, it is only now, after 4-years of therapy that he feels comfortable talking about his experiences. You can read Anthony Edwards' entire statement courtesy of Medium.com.