Andrew Rannells is opening up about being sexually assaulted by a priest when he was just a teenager.
The “Girls” actor, who played Elijah on the hit HBO series, goes into details about his alleged encounters with the priest while growing up in Omaha, Nebraska in an excerpt from his memoir, “Too Much Is Not Enough.”
“My retirement from the altar came just as my interest in it disappeared, but my relationship to priests was just about to kick into high gear,” he writes.
Describing his struggles with homosexuality, he says he decided to confide to the priest, who he names Father Dominic.
“I sat across from him in a dark corner, our knees touching. He grabbed my neck, as expected, and I started to talk. I started to try to explain what was happening with me, but I couldn’t make the words come out right,” Rannells recalls. “Instead, I started to cry. I was so embarrassed. Father Dominic squeezed my neck harder, and he grabbed both my hands with his free hand. His hands were like baseball mitts. We just sat there while I cried.”
“He finally said, ‘It’s okay. You’ve done nothing wrong.’ It wasn’t exactly what I was looking for, but it still felt nice. He stood up and pulled me up with him. He hugged me tightly,” the actor continues. “I felt safe and heard and understood. Then, with unexpected force, he kissed me. On the lips. He muscled his tongue into my mouth and held the back of my head still. Then he released me and made the sign of the cross on my forehead. He smiled.”
Andrew Rannells, who is now 40 years old, says he attempted to avoid Father Dominic for the rest of the year but claims he was forced to encounter him after Rannells’ mom invited the priest to his graduation party.
“At some point, Father Dominic needed to leave, and he asked if I could show him out. I knew what was coming, but at this point, I didn’t care,” he writes.
“I had performed and received numerous sex acts with a man I didn’t care about, and I just walked around feeling damaged,” he recalls. “We stood at my parents’ front door and said our good-byes for the final time, and then he grabbed me by the back of the neck and forced his tongue in my mouth. I just stood there and let him. I didn’t kiss back, but I also didn’t move. He smiled at me and walked to his car.”
Andrew Rannells isn’t the only “Girls” star who’s opened up about sexual assault in the past.
Jemima Kirke, who played Jessa, was so inspired by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford‘s testimony against Brett Kavanaugh last year that she revealed she was raped by her drug dealer at 22 years old.