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Tyler Perry Reveals Childhood Abuse

Entertainment Tonight, Tuesday, October 6, 2009, 7:21am (PDT)

In a highly personal blog post on his Web site, Tyler Perry reveals that 'Precious,' the film he's producing with Oprah, is close to his heart because he grew up with sexual and physical abuse.

The ''Medea" creator says he was sexually assaulted by both men and women as a child, giving a detailed account about the mother of a childhood friend who locked him in her apartment. "I couldn't have been more than 10 years old," he writes.

He also tells of being beaten and verbally abused by his father, who he says would mock him for reading books and beat him for eating cookies. He also details an account of his father attempting to sexually abuse a childhood friend -- a girl who lived across the street.

He says his father was a drunk who hit him often, without reason. One time, "he got the vacuum cleaner extension cord and trapped me in a room and beat me until the skin was coming off my back," Perry writes.

His father wasn't the only abusive man in his life, as Perry goes on to say another man sexually molested him. "I got a call not long ago from a friend," he says. "He told me that a man that I knew from church when I was a kid had died and he didn't have any insurance. His family was trying to reach out to me to see if I would pay for his funeral. I quickly said no, but I wish I would have said yes. There is something so powerful to me in burying the man that molested me. I wish I would have dug the grave myself."

Through it all, Perry says two things allowed him to survive: his faith and God and his creativity. "I learned to use my gift," he says, "as it was my imagination that let me escape."

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