'I truly felt like I could die' - Evan Rachel Wood recalls rape, torture during congress testimony

Evan Rachel Wood
The Westworld star delivered a chilling testimony to congress. Photo credit: Getty

Evan Rachel Wood has told of her horrific history of rape, torture and mental abuse at the hands of a former boyfriend.

The Westworld star delivered a chilling testimony before congress on Wednesday, as part of a push to implement the Sexual Assault Survivor's Bill of Rights Act in all 50 US states.

Time reports that Wood told the House Judiciary Subcommittee how the abuse "started slow but escalated over time".

"[It] included threats against my life, severe gaslighting and brainwashing [and] waking up to the man that claimed to love me raping what he believed to be my unconscious body. 

"And the worst part: Sick rituals of binding me up by my hands and feet to be mentally and physically tortured until my abuser felt I had proven my love for them."

The 30-year-old actress detailed how she thought her life was going to end.

"While I was tied up and being beaten and told unspeakable things, I truly felt like I could die," she continued. "Not just because my abuser said to me, 'I could kill you right now,' but because in that moment I felt like I left my body and I was too afraid to run."

Wood says she was so affected by the sexual assaults that she spent time in a psychiatric hospital after attempting to commit suicide.

"So often we speak of these assaults as no more than a few minutes of awfulness, but the scars last a lifetime. Even though these experiences happened a decade ago, I still struggle with the aftermath," she explained.

"Seven years after my rapes - plural - I was diagnosed with long-term PTSD, which I had been living with all that time without knowledge about my condition.

"I simply thought I was going crazy."

The Sexual Assault Survivor's Bill of Rights Act enables victims to receive free rape kit tests after their assault, and then be informed of the results and given the option to preserve the evidence. 

Newshub.