FKA twigs is opening up more about her abusive relationship with ex-boyfriend Shia LaBeouf in new interview on the ‘Grounded with Louis Theroux’ podcast.
The acclaimed UK singer-songwriter came forward with allegations against LaBeouf of sexual battery, assault and infliction of emotional distress in a lawsuit filed with the Los Angeles Superior Court in December 2020. Twigs went into further detail about her relationship with LaBeouf in a New York Times profile where she recounted the actor threatening to crash his car in the desert if she didn’t profess her love for him. After begging him to let her go, twigs says they pulled over to a gas station where LaBeouf threw her against the car and assaulted her in public.
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“What I went through with Shia was the worst thing I’ve ever been through in the whole of my life,” twigs told the New York Times. “I don’t think people would ever think that it would happen to me. But I think that’s the thing. It can happen to anybody.”
LaBeouf is also accused of knowingly giving twigs an STD, drunkenly head-butting her in bed, demanding she avoid eye contact with other men, and more. The same New York Times profile includes a response from LaBeouf regarding twigs‘ accusations:
“I’m not in any position to tell anyone how my behavior. I have no excuses for my alcoholism or aggression, only rationalizations. I have been abusive to myself and everyone around me for years. I have a history of hurting the people closest to me. I’m ashamed of that history and am so sorry to those I hurt. There is nothing else I can really say.”
Sia speaks out about being emotionally abused by Shia LaBeouf in new tweets supporting FKA twigs’ recent revelation:
“I too have been hurt emotionally by Shia, a pathological liar, who conned me into an adulterous relationship claiming to be single.” pic.twitter.com/7c1qUMN6DH
— Pop Crave (@PopCrave) December 13, 2020
In a new interview on BBC Sounds, twigs tells host Louis Theroux she came forward publicly in an effort to erase the stigma around domestic abuse. More specifically, twigs says she wants to eliminate victim-blaming in the hopes that people will feel safer sharing their stories:
“I’m healed to a point where I can put my experience into something positive to help other people,” twigs said. “That’s all I want. Someone’s got to take the risk and do it…let’s banish the question of ‘why didn’t you leave?’ and then start asking the abusers ‘why are you holding someone hostage with your abuse?’ If i can just start the conversation there, then it will be worth coming forward.”
Twigs goes on to describe behaviors that signal an abusive relationship, including an intense “honeymoon” phase at the beginning of a relationship. “It’s a signifier for how great things can be, and it sets the benchmark if you behave well and fulfill all the requirements,” twigs said. “There’s intense love bombing, big displays of affection, lots of love words, happy times, laughs, and you’re put on a pedestal. That’s common in the beginning of an abusive relationship.”
LaBeouf imposed a strict “quota” on twigs that demanded roughly 20 kisses, touches or displays of affection throughout the day, the singer tells Theroux, as well as a rule that prohibited her from making eye contact with other men. Twigs recalls the actor waking her up in the middle of the night to berate her with accusations that she was thinking of leaving him, wanting to be with someone else or even masturbating.
“For me, I’ve been trying to not wake up between 3 and 7 am in a panic attack,” twigs tells Theroux. “That’s what I’ve been trying to do. I’m there now, but for a long time, anything that woke me up in the night could trigger a really intense panic attack. I was left with PTSD from that.”
Twigs is asking for a trial by jury in a civil suit against LaBeouf. The singer explains that she understood the gravity of her situation after LaBeouf assaulted her in public at a gas station following his rage-filled drive through the desert in February 2019.
Listen from tomorrow (Monday 25th January) on BBC Sounds. pic.twitter.com/kEAthGVl5u
— BBC Sounds (@BBCSounds) January 24, 2021
“He basically strangled me in public at a gas station and nobody did anything. That was a really low moment for me because I felt that I’d never be believed…Nobody was stepping in. If I saw something happening I’d go and help. But for people to see me being treated that way and not helping was really disheartening.”
Twigs asked that LaBeouf donate money to an organization helping victims of abuse, among other things, noting that her experience calling a help line was a transformational experience:
“I called an abused women’s help line, the first one that came up. Her reaction on the other line was so serious – she was like, ‘OK, from what you’ve said, it feels like you’re in an unsafe place. Does your abuser know where you are?’ It was very black and white, almost like I was calling a paramedic.”
She continued: “This was someone who didn’t even know me or know I’m a singer, but they were taking it so seriously and wanted me to get somewhere safe. That was a big wake up call where I realized I needed to get out of this.”
If she wins her civil suit against LaBeouf, twigs has promised to donate a “significant” portion of damages awarded to charities combatting domestic violence. Listen to twigs full interview on ‘Grounded With Louis Theroux’ here.