The six-time Olympic medalist revealed she was sexually abused by USA Gymnastics doctor Lawrence Nassar in a recent interview with 60 Minutes. Raisman, who was first treated by Nassar when she was 15, details his shocking abuse in her new memoir “Fierce.” During her appearance on the morning show, the athlete spoke to Hoda Kotb about how Nassar molested her under the guise of medical treatment, and explained what prompted her to tell her story.
“From the moment that I realized it happened to me, I wanted to talk about it,” Raisman shared. “When I found out I was going to be writing a book, I wanted to include the best moments of my life but also the worst moments of my life because they both make us into who we are. The hardest parts are really difficult to talk about, but it’s made me into a stronger person and if you’re going to write a book, you have to include everything.”
Raisman went on to describe her “disturbing” experiences with the team’s doctor. “I just thought he was weird. I really didn’t know it was happening to me. He was a doctor, and he told me his treatment would heal all my injuries. Everyone said he was the best. He always seemed like he had my back. He was such a master manipulator… These monsters are so good at manipulating you. I thought he was so nice,” she said.
The gymnast continued, referring to Nassar as a “monster.” She said, “I think he’s a monster. It’s so disturbing what he did to me and so many other people. This is so much bigger than just me. It’s such a horrific thing to happen. I stand here with all the other survivors who have been abused by Larry, and other people who have been abused by anyone.”
And on victim shaming, Raisman said, “It’s totally normal to be afraid of what people think of you. Society makes it hard for people to come forward, because you always have people who victim shame. We have to stop that because it’s awful. I wanted to do the right thing.” Watch the full “Today” show interview below.