Ruth Langsford has revealed that she was sexually assaulted when she was 11 years old.
The Loose Women star, 61, says a man once put her hand up his skirt when she was a schoolgirl while she was travelling on a crowded train.
The ITV presenter says she was even flashed and followed by men as she rode the London Underground to and from school between the ages of 11 and 16.
And she says she didn’t shout, scream or report the men to police – something she would urge women to do now.
Ruth, who is married to fellow TV presenter Eamonn Holmes, wrote in Best magazine: “I was flashed at more than once, followed a few times and a man once put his hand up my skirt on a crowded train.
“These incidents all happened to me between the ages of about 11 and 16. I now ask myself why I didn’t shout, scream, kick up a fuss, report them to an official – all the things I would urge any girl or woman to do today.”
Ruth says she was inspired to speak out about what happened to her after the tragic murder of Sarah Everard, who was kidnapped and killed while walking home from a friend’s house.
And she said that “perverts and predators” were drawn to the route she used to get to school “like wasps to jam”.
She added: “Not every man is a danger, not every man is a sexual predator or a murderer but they are also not us.
“The awful death of Sarah Everard has got a lot of women re-evaluating what we feel, what we have, or do, put up with – just by being a woman.”
Ruth praised her husband, who she said “honours, respects, champions and defends women”, but she says that he had no experience of sexual harassment like many women have.
She said that when she speaks to her friends about the topic, they all have “frightening” experiences of their own to share.
Sarah, 33, was killed earlier this month after she went missing on her way home from a friend’s house in Clapham, London.
Her body was found days later and a serving Met police officer has been charged with her kidnap and murder.
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