ABC’s Dancing with the Stars pro Cheryl Burke is speaking out about being molested as a child. Keep reading to hear her story…
People Magazine reports “Dancing with the Stars” pro Cheryl Burke is sharing her story of abuse in her new book, “Dancing Lessons.”
“I’m telling my story,” she tells People about the instances of abuse documented in her book, “They’re not secrets. There’s no shame.”
People reports Cheryl reveals she was molested as a child and physically abused by a former boyfriend.
Cheryl was assaulted repeatedly by a family friend when she was 5-years-old, according to People. The magazine says her abuser was well-liked and trusted by Cheryl’s Bay Area community and would occasionally pick her up from school and help out with odd jobs around her house.
The man was eventually accused of targeting other children, which prompted Cheryl to step forward with her own story in court. Her testimony helped send him to prison for almost 20 years.
Cheryl tells People testifying against him was one of the hardest things she’s every done, saying “I felt guilty for wanting his love and affection…I saw his face and lawyers were asking me these questions and I was like, ‘What am I doing? Did he even do anything wrong?’”
Now she’s hoping to help others by sharing her story. “If I can help just one person,” she says, “for me that’s all that matters.”
The next season of “Dancing with the Stars” will air in March on ABC.
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Photo Credit: ABC