Brooke Shields, 56, is opening up about the sexual fears she had in her 20s. The actress, who has been viewed as one of the Hollywood’s most gorgeous and confident women over the years, recently admitted that she was “terrified” of sex when she was younger and lost her virginity when she was 22. She was talking about the ageism that can exist in her industry when the topic came up.
“My career, I was being told sort of, oh, you’re not viable once you’re 40,” she said in a video interview for Yahoo! Life. “We’re not at the end the way people are living now. We’re at a new beginning. And so I kept saying I just feel like I’m beginning. I just feel like I’m beginning.”
“I wanted to market to that, to help women really sort of find the courage and take the chances, and the resilience, that they’ve had to get this far and really kind of embrace the next chapter,” she continued. “Sex for me it has really evolved. My 20s, I was always terrified of it, because I was a virgin until I was 22.”
She went on to explain how she viewed sex as a Catholic and an unmarried woman. “You know, I thought I was committing an offense to humanity for being a Catholic, not married, and I had so much guilt,” she explained. “My 30s, it wasn’t really about being sexy. It was having your body work to create something. That was like a 10-year kind of journey.”
Once Brooke entered her 40s, she began to really see sex as something for herself. “And it wasn’t until my 40s that I started thinking of sex as my experience, not someone else’s experience that I just navigated,” she shared before mentioning how she wants her own lessons to positively affect her daughters, Rowan, 18, and Grier, 15. “What I want my daughters to know is that it’s a joint decision. Even with as woke as everybody is, you’d be shocked at how they see themselves within relationships.”
“I don’t want them ever to feel used,” she further explained. “I want them to feel more in control and not ashamed of anything. I do have a wonderful husband who celebrates me. He loves me at every stage, which I’m very blessed by.”
Brooke has been married to Chris Henchy since 2001 and she talked about the importance of keeping their romance alive, even after having kids. “You can’t lose sight of date night, or romance. You don’t want it to become, like, a chore. You know?” she said. “With age comes this sense of confidence and knowledge. And I think that that’s not the predominant message out there.”
She concluded by explaining that she’s “not tied to what the outside is” for her “self esteem” and is happy with how comfortable she is with herself now. “I think that’s a miracle coming through this business, and being in it as long as I have,” she added. “My currency wasn’t the outside. It’s about vitality, not aging.”
Check out Brooke’s full interview above.