She's never been one to shy away from the difficult conversations. On her social media she's known for being open about depression, life's ups and downs, trying to get fit and recovering from drugs and alcohol abuse.
Activist and author Zoleka Mandela recently got candid and open about suffering sexual abuse at a very young age from both men and women.
Zoleka, who is the granddaughter of the late Nelson Mandela and Winnie Madikizela Mandela, is known for encouraging people to talk and she lives it and shares about almost everything, including losing her two children, daughter, Zenani who died in a car accident in 2010 and Zenawe, who was born premature.
Taking to her Instagram, she shared how being sexually abused at a young age affected her and the way she viewed herself.
“This is me as a child, I spent decades blaming myself, believing that all the sexual abuse by both the men and women in my life, I deserved. Not knowing that I would be physically and sexually abused even more (after this picture was taken) ... convinced me that I didn’t deserve more.
"I’ve hated myself so much that my many suicidal attempts, were an attempt at ending a life I didn’t deserve, so much that my addiction to sex, drugs and alcohol was an attempt at numbing the self-hate I felt for decades, because I was desperate to feel something good, because I felt I didn’t have the right and strength to live,” she posted.
Zoleka further explained that she is not the things that have happened to her and shared how she had to learn to love herself as a way to healing.
“But I am more than what happened to me, more than someone who used to self harm or cut themselves, I am far more than an addict, a survivor of depression and anxiety, more than a survivor. I am deserving of the life I want for myself, I am strength, I am self love, I am worthy, I am love, a fighter and I am a force to be reckoned with. I am Zoleka!”
See the post here: