Jessica Simpson Talks Sex Abuse, Drug And Alcohol Issues In New Book
Jessica Simpson has always been known for being kind of an open book so it’s only right that the name of her new memoir is Open Book. The book is excerpted in this week’s issue of PEOPLE magazine. Among Simpson’s brave revelations are the sexual abuse she suffered as a child as well as a dependency on alcohol and stimulants that prompted her doctor to warn her that her life was in danger.
“I was killing myself with all the drinking and pills,” she writes.
The star got sober in November 2017 and hasn’t had a drink since. “Giving up the alcohol was easy,” she says. “I was mad at that bottle. At how it allowed me to stay complacent and numb.”
Therapy, she says, was the hard part. As she writes, “With work, I allowed myself to feel the traumas I’d been through.”
Simpson says she was only six-years-old when she was first sexually abused, “when I shared a bed with the daughter of a family friend,” she writes.
“It would start with tickling my back and then go into things that were extremely uncomfortable.”
“I wanted to tell my parents,” she writes. “I was the victim but somehow I felt in the wrong.”
Jessica says when she was 12 she eventually she did tell her parents, Tina and Joe Simpson, during a car trip.
Her mother slapped her father’s arm and yelled at him: “I told you something was happening.”
“Dad kept his eye on the road and said nothing,” Simpson writes. “We never stayed at my parents’ friends house again but we also didn’t talk about what I had said.”
We’re so glad that her parents believed her and protected her. Jessica had their support and the support of her friends when she finally decided to sober up from alcohol and drugs.
She writes about hitting rock bottom after a Halloween party in 2017 at the home she shares with husband Eric Johnson and their children. Simpson told her closest friends:
“I need to stop. Something’s got to stop. And if it’s the alcohol that’s doing this, and making things worse, then I quit.”
She says her friends embraced her in a group hug and have remained supportive. With help from her parents, a team of doctors and therapy twice a week, she’s maintained her sobriety ever since that day.
“When I finally said I needed help, it was like I was that little girl that found her calling again in life,” she says. “I found direction and that was to walk straight ahead with no fear.”
“Honesty is hard but it’s the most rewarding thing we have,” she says. “And getting to the other side of fear is beautiful.”
In addition to her memoir and the audio book she narrates, Simpson is also releasing new music, six new songs that tell her story. Simpson says she hopes the book and music will help others know they’re not alone.