Gabby Douglas has faced a lot of backlash this week after she made comments online about consent and sexual harassment. Now, she's stepping forward to say unequivocally that she stands with her teammates, and she's adding her voice to theirs. As part of a larger statement, she disclosed that she, too, was abused by Dr. Larry Nassar.
Douglas's full statement provides context for her inflammatory words and tries to set the record straight. Douglas states outright that "no matter what you wear, it NEVER gives anyone the right to harass or abuse you." She reiterates that she never meant to disrespect her teammates or cause a rift between them.
Douglas also chose to divulge that Dr. Larry Nassar, the team doctor for the USA Olympic Gymnastics Team, abused her as well.
"I didn't publicly share my experiences as well as many other things," Douglas wrote, "because for years we were conditioned to stay silent and honestly some things were extremely painful."
Since the storm of tweets and replies accusing Douglas of victim-blaming and misogyny died down, she's been largely silent on social media. Her most recent tweet stands to remind everyone which side she's on.
i didn’t correctly word my reply & i am deeply sorry for coming off like i don’t stand alongside my teammates. regardless of what you wear, abuse under any circumstance is never acceptable. i am WITH you. #metoo— Gabby Douglas (@gabrielledoug) November 18, 2017
The debate was sparked for Douglas when she responded to a post by her teammate, Aly Raisman, suggesting that women had "a responsibility to dress modestly" to avoid being assaulted. Raisman and fellow teammate Simone Biles were among those to criticize Douglas for the remark, and for her lack of solidarity. In her statement today, Douglas said that the remark was fueled in part by an evening she spent with hundreds of young girls, who saw her as a role model.
Douglas's teammates have yet to respond to her latest statement.