The Bling Ring’s Alexis Neiers shares childhood sexual abuse story, says she covered the pain with drugs

Alexis Neiers is now a married, sober 22-year-old mother and drug and alcohol counselor, but just a few years ago she was involved in the Hollywood Bling Ring, was deep in a drug addiction, and starring in a short-lived reality show. In a VICE column, Alexis now reveals that she abused heroin and alcohol to cover up the pain of childhood sexual abuse by a family member.

Alexis said she didn’t even remember the abuse until she got sober for the first time, and then subsequently relapsed at age 18. She started having night terrors and flashbacks to the abuse, but has just now decided to take the issue to the authorities.

She writes:

I had seen this family member a few times in the last ten years, and he seemed normal. When I heard he had a child, I decided I couldn’t report the sexual abuse that happened nearly two decades ago—I felt guilty. If I reported what he did to me, his child would lose his financial support and could end up on the street. I didn’t want to ruin his child’s life. But I knew in my heart that, at the end of the day, this man has a child—a child who is the same age I was when he started abusing me. I would feel responsible if anything happened.

So here I am, four years after my memories returned, reporting the abuse to the authorities and sharing it with the world. I didn’t report his actions for revenge or to make myself feel better—it was a painful experience and reporting the abuse doesn’t keep the painful memories from returning.

She didn’t have specific memories for a while, but she “always knew that I had been abused and traumatized as a kid—I have divorced parents and an alcoholic father. Like many addicts, I began drinking and using at a young age to escape.”

Alexis, who now works as a counselor at Acadia Malibu, give some startling statistics:

– one in five girls and one in 20 boys are sexually abused

– 20 percent of adult females and 5-10 percent of adult males recall being sexually assaulted or abused as a child

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