Riverdale is fast becoming known for its kickass cast of women who aren’t afraid to speak up for the causes they believe in. Lili Reinhart has blasted a magazine for photoshopping her body, Madelaine Petsch has spoken about her battle with anxiety and now Camila Mendes, who plays the role of Veronica Lodge, has opened up about how she overcame sexual assault during her college years at NYU.
In an interview with Women’s Health, the Riverdale star discussed the poignant meaning behind her tattoo. “I got the tattoo after my freshman year. I had a very, very bad experience. I was roofied by someone who sexually assaulted me,” she said of the inking that reads “to build a home”.
On top of that, the actress reflected on her unsettled childhood where her family moved twelve times before she turned eighteen. Speaking of a lack of safety and security growing up, Camila said: “If you don’t have that literal box, you have to create it in your habits.” The tattoo serves as a reminder of what she can “do physically for herself.”
Camila also discussed her battle with an eating disorder which she’s recently recovered from after seeing a therapist and nutritionist. “I needed professionals I trusted to tell me things that I didn’t know.”. Speaking of the lack of role models she had as a kid, Camila said: “Being thin was the thing.”
It’s not the first time Camila has spoken out about body image. In 2017, the 24-year-old actress partnered with Project HEAL to help make treatment more accessible for those with eating disorders.” She also posted an honest post to Instagram about why she “decided to stop dieting and chasing this idea of a body that I was conditioned to believe was the only acceptable shape.”
We salute you for your honesty, Camila!