There is a lot about Taraji P. Henson’s past that we knew nothing about — until now. The actress’ book, ‘Around The Way Girl,’ drops on Oct. 11, and in a newly-released excerpt, she details the terrifying abuse she dealt with at the hands of her ex, Mark Johnson.
Taraji P. Henson, 46, has been raising her son, Marcell, 22, as a single mother for most of his life, and it was her decision to split from his dad, Mark Johnson, just shortly after the baby was born in 1994. In her new book, Around The Way Girl, Taraji details an abusive exchange she had with Mark, and explains how she was able to leave him.
The fight went down when he came home late one night. “The next thing I knew, Mark’s balled-up first was coming straight for my face,” the Empire star writes, via People. “I pulled my hand from my mouth and looked at the blood on my trembling finger.”
It turns out, Taraji’s own father abused her mother when she was a child. However, he was open with the actress about his behavior, and even apologized, so they were able to stay close until his death in 2006. It was this honesty that helped Taraji gather the “strength to walk away” from Mark, and she allowed her son to still have a relationship with him. Sadly, Mark died after being stabbed in 2003 at the age of 34.
Now, the 46-year-old says she’s sharing her story to help others. “It happened and I’m not ashamed of it,” she tells People. “It made me who I am.” And with an Oscar nomination and Golden Globe win…the person she is today surely ain’t so bad!
HollywoodLifers, are you shocked by Taraji’s story? What do you think of her deciding to speak out?