Drew Barrymore on sexual assault: ‘I’m scrappy, nobody messed with me’

Drew Barrymore gave an interview to US Magazine at the Glamour Celebrates 2017 Women Of The Year Awards. I hope that they asked her leading questions and that all of this is taken out of context, because her comments didn’t really sit right with me. It’s true that I’m sensitive about the issue of harassment and assault, so many of us are, but I wish she would have phrased some of these things differently. I guess we’re all different and we all make sense of things differently. She also may have just been being defensive and didn’t want to talk about serious things in a throwaway red carpet interview, which is her right.

“I think it’s an extraordinary time for women,” Barrymore, 42, said. “And you have to encourage all of this strength. And defiance is a tricky word but I feel like there’s a way in which women can be pioneers that seems a lot more in keeping with strength rather than anger.”

The Santa Clarita Diet star, who has been in the business since she was a child, told Us Weekly that she has not personally experienced any harassment in Hollywood during her long career.

“No, I was scrappy! Nobody messed with me!” Barrymore explained.

The 50 First Dates actress also opened about how she remains hopeful in the industry despite the recent surge of sexual harassment reports and allegations against Hollywood males like Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey and Jeremy Piven.

“The hope is that women are taking care of themselves,” Barrymore said. “And taking care of each other inadvertently. For every woman that is brave she’s also protecting another woman.”

[From US Magazine]

I know Drew didn’t mean to say that women can avoid sexual assault by being “scrappy,” I know she was just trying to speak to her own experience, but if I was her I would have just said that I’d been lucky. So many “scrappy” men and women have been assaulted, many in the presence of friends, family members and partners. You can fight back, you can run, you can use weapons, but still get assaulted or murdered anyway. It can be a person you knew and loved who violates you or it can be a stranger at a party where you assume you’re safe. Someone can drug you and make it impossible for you to even move. I know I sound so negative going through these depressingly awful scenarios but honestly it’s been on my mind since we’ve heard about all these cases. It’s just so prevalent, and there’s often no rhyme or reason to who escapes from a predator.

What did Drew mean by this? “There’s a way in which women can be pioneers that seems a lot more in keeping with strength rather than anger.” Is she telling women we shouldn’t be angry about this issue and that we should be “strong” instead? Because those things aren’t mutually exclusive. It’s hard to think of something more deserving of anger than this. We don’t have to play nice at times like these. Also the whole “women are taking care of themselves” sentiment reminded me so much of what Matt Damon said about Gwyneth Paltrow and Harvey Weinstein.

Oh and Drew got crap recently for holding up a Starfish for an Instagram selfie, potentially killing the sea creature. Instead of using that as a teaching moment (see: Brie Larson) she called people “haters,” called the comments “mean, cruel, and ugly” (to be fair some of them probably got personal instead of pointing out the facts) and then got a makeover. She posted her retort on a photo of herself getting her hair cut. That’ll show them.




photos credit: Pacific Coast News and WENN

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132 Responses to “Drew Barrymore on sexual assault: ‘I’m scrappy, nobody messed with me’”

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  1. island_girl says:

    Oh Drew. Take a seat, be humble and supportive.

    • Katie says:

      Yeah, that was tone deaf. I don’t know if she’s ever been known for being insightful, though. By the way, I watched half an episode of Santa Clarita diet and man, she cannot act. Was she better before? Did something happen?

      • ArchieGoodwin says:

        No, nothing changed. She has always been that terrible. She was a child star, made a star by virtue of her grandfather, not talent.

      • NotSoSocialButterfly says:

        @Archie Goodwin-

        This is it. Her family is old Hollywood, she has been a commodity since E.T., no one would harass her.

      • raptor says:

        I enjoyed her performance in Grey Gardens, and that’s it.

      • Jayna says:

        Loved her in Grey Gardens, 50 First Dates, and Miss You Already.

      • Angel says:

        That was me too during santa clarita diet, i loved it but sometimes she was just sooooo bad.

      • Bettyrose says:

        In all fairness, she was thrust into stardom at the age of 5. Yeah her famous name got her there, but it’s not like she was in charge of her choices at that age.

      • Cranberry says:

        Yey, Grey Gardens ! !

        Loved it and the original documentary. She did a great job as Edie.

      • CGF says:

        They harassed Gwyneth and she comes from a Hollywood family too.

      • shlockOftheNEw says:

        She’s a got a #metoo or two. IMO she’s not ready; I mean, Drew has been in Hollywood since 5 w a subsequent substance history…mmm….

    • Radley says:

      I dunno. I think this comes across so badly because she’s straight up lying. She was a drug addled child in nightclubs with adults and not once did a single pervert try anything? Sadly, I find that hard to believe.

      It’s her right to not talk about it. I mean, maybe she can’t. Memories may be very fuzzy because of the substance abuse, so it’s difficult to piece it all together. But her comments just ping with me.

      • lucy2 says:

        Honestly I find it hard to believe too. Or at the very least that no one tried anything with her. But if she’s saying no, I guess we have to believe her, but she’s really wrong that being “scrappy” can keep you from being victimized.

      • kimbers says:

        I don’t believe her either.

        people don’t need to tell their experiences if they don’t want to. I think the scrappy comment was just deflection.

      • HadleyB says:

        I don’t believe her either and it’s her right to not talk about it but … with her background, her mother, the situations — partying at 7 at nightclubs and drinking I just don’t believe her. The people she was around all the time?

        But whatever gets her through the day, we all have things to get us through life and she wants to deny it thats fine but I don’t buy it ,but I believe she has been through a lot.

        But I for sure didn’t like her comment that was she tough “scrappy” so she made it through life untouched … so because I was harassed all my life at every job and fondled at clubs just being with girlfriends I wasn’t “tough” enough? Get out.

      • Shambles says:

        Yeah, Despite the poor word choice, she gets a pass from me here. I don’t believe her, but that comes along with a lot of compassion. She has a right to guard her personal experiences, and she chose a bad way to say it.

      • Tessy says:

        I don’t believe it for a minute. She was an alcoholic as a very young child, and partying with a bunch of depraved adults. Are we to buy that none of them messed with an inebriated nine year old just because she was “scrappy”? Poor girl, I always have a lot of compassion for her, she had it so tough yet managed to not turn out like Lohan.

      • Peggy says:

        When you’re partying at 9 years old in Studio 54, with cocaine all around and your parent is enjoying the perks of the club, who was looking after this child?

      • Cranberry says:

        I can believe that no one in the film industry harassed her. She was too well known and connected to old guard and the new ie. Spielberg. In her teens and 20s she was a loose canon. An offender would be afraid she’d out him on live TV like she did when she flashed her boobs the Letterman Show. So I do believe she had the scrappy, loose canon defense on her side as well as HW family connections.

      • FF says:

        Same. Not buying it but if that’s how she wants this to go over…

        The “scrappy” argument is pure deflection, an unfortunate implication/wording.

        Also, this idea that no one would mess with her because of her Hollywood heritage is wishful thinking at best. Abusers aren’t stopped by anything except a 200lb bodyguard.

      • Milla says:

        She doesn’t have to talk about it. She was a tiny girl surrounded by adults and of course she paid the price.
        I’m not her fan, but her childhood seems like a nightmare. She was an addict when she wad barely a teenager…

      • Janetdr says:

        That was my first thought too -she was out clubbing as a child, it looked like such a dangerous situation.

      • Danielle says:

        I was angry when I first read what she said…but yeah, this is most likely deflecting. “I was scrappy”, anything that happened I consented to. There is pain and shame, right or wrong, to being a victim. Many of us dodge that through rationalization. And that’s not our fault.

    • Kyra Wegman says:

      No, she really can’t act; in fact she loves to give interviews where she says you’ll never catch her going on about her “craft,” she thinks it doesn’t matter. Also, I second this: people didn’t mess with her because she was the daughter of a powerhouse acting dynasty, not because she was “scrappy.” So sick of these people born on third base.

      • Neelyo says:

        In her defense, I doubt she had family money. Barrymore is a name for sure, but wealth? Their work was primarily in theatre, her grandfather was down to B pictures by the time he died in the early 1940s and her father barely had an acting career.

        All she had was a mother willing to cash in on that name to make money.

    • bluhare says:

      I remember back in the day we had this guy who was going around hitting on all the women in the office, and I mean everyone — and twice to one of my best friends there. Yet he didn’t do it to me. I remember asking people what was wrong with me; why was he bothering everyone else but not me? What was wrong with me? It was weird. I felt like I was unattractive or something. I remember the responses, and they were along the lines of he wasn’t bothering me because I looked like I could take care of myself. So, no, I wasn’t scrappy, but apparently I projected something.

      And he finally said something disgusting to me at the coffee machine one day. I was actually pleased if I remember right. And I think delivered a set down, but I was so pleased to not be considered unattractive I don’t even remember what it was. (And he did eventually end up being fired, although it wasn’t phrased that way and I think harrassing the staff was part — but not all — of the reason why.)

      However, other men did worse when I was about 20. I remember one middle aged bank manager. And one of my bosses.

      • Maria says:

        In Junior High, one guy was hitting on one of my friends, and she asked him why he didn’t hit on me, and his reply was “because she wears glasses”.

      • sunnydaze says:

        Oh my god, I can relate to this so much. At a point in my life where I was much thinner and (in my mind) more attractive I absolutely recall catcalls, sexual remarks and random groping at bars and the like. This was probably at its peak age 19-27. In fact, I remember feeling validated as a former ugly duckling. When this kind of behavior began to end, I took it as I was becoming unattractive. Suddenly I was jealous of a woman being harassed at work, jealous of the woman who was getting endless phone calls and gross phone calls in the middle of the night. (in my mind), How beautiful and desirable must she be to elicit such a response! Not saying I wanted to deal with the harassment, but I wanted to be the kind of person that would “drive men crazy”. As I’ve grown older, I now look back on those days with absolute disgust.

        I’m going to have to really sit with this and unpack some feelings around self-esteem, how women are socialized to feel validation, internalized misogyny…pretty much everything. I also can’t believe I was the only one that felt that way…I know I laughed along with a lot of my friends about this kind of behavior, and whether they internalized it the same way as I did or not, in that moment there was an outward acceptance that teetered on boasting.

        If I weren’t feeling so crummy right now I’d try and articulate this better…but I think I need to look more into this…maybe this is something more people should be talking about?

      • Ladidah says:

        Sounds like women wanting to be noticed and acknowledged by men with the possibility they are sexual human beings (understandably) but of course not harassed (very understandable).

        It is complicated, and women are allowed to be. I do think French society understands this a little bit more – in the way you flirt but it is innocent, or a French woman can be in her 60s/70s/80s and consistently still be considered womanly, acknowledged as sexual, etc. in a way the Us society at large can fail to do.

        No one wants to feel invisible, is what I see as a common thread?

      • bluhare says:

        For me, it was because I was insecure about my looks anyway, and he was hitting on women I thought were less attractive than I was. I couldn’t figure it out.

      • Annetommy says:

        Sunnydaze, I think you’ve identified the likely reasons why you did this, it’s worth unpacking it, but don’t beat yourself up about it, feel better soon.

      • Bonzo says:

        Thank you for sharing this. I think Drew’s word choice wasn’t the best, but I understood what she meant. I too, project a lot of confidence (tho’ I don’t I think I’m as confident as others perceive me to be) and I’ve never been harassed or assaulted. I think men who look to use their power over women instinctively ignore me.

        That confidence also meant that most guys were intimidated by me and I didn’t date much. It took three decades for me to find somebody who is confident enough in himself to be with me. That was the downside of my confidence projection.

      • bluhare says:

        Bonzo, you are my long lost twin. That is exactly how things were for me as well, at least from my late 20’s forward. What I’m saying above happened then. Prior to that I did have issues with men. I think I learnt, and I’m glad I did although I was really weirded out at the time!

      • Danielle says:

        I was angry when I first read what she said…but yeah, this is most likely deflecting. “I was scrappy”, anything that happened I consented to. There is pain and shame, right or wrong, to being a victim. Many of us dodge that through rationalization. And that’s not our fault.

      • Danielle says:

        Blueare, I absolutely agree that how you present yourself makes a difference. Again, this is not the fault of victims. We need to train girls, women to be strong. Strength scares bullies, but we as women are trained to be pacifists

      • Bonzo says:

        bluhare, I certainly had trust issues with men and didn’t let them get close so that was also working against me! My boundary issues were more about building walls than not having them…ha. I had to get my heart broken badly to be able to open up to the wonderful man that wormed his way into my heart shortly after.

        I’m glad I’m not the only one who got what Drew was saying. Men who desire total control hate women who will resist it and I know I give off that vibe since I’m not afraid to speak my mind. 🙂

    • Lahdidahbaby says:

      Exactly, island-girl — Drew’s remarks were the height of arrogance and insensitivity because they implied that if you ARE sexually harrassed or attacked it’s because you’re the OPPOSITE of “scrappy”: passive and weak. A really disgusting comment by anyone — but indefensible for a woman, especially one in the public eye. It plays right into the old Blame the Victim mentality that aggressive men have dined out on forever: She was asking for it…Look how she was dressed…Her “no” sounded like yes.

      • bluhare says:

        I agree and disagree. I don’t think it implies people who are sexually harassed are passive and weak. I think it says how you are *perceived*, whether you are what you project or not, is a factor.

        I was harassed/assaulted when I was younger. It did not happen when I got a bit older. I think the difference was more my attitude than theirs. I just wish I’d have known it at the time.

    • jwoolman says:

      More likely the Barrymore name protected her, at least outside the family. Didn’t she ever think of that? All this time she’s thought it’s because she is so scrappy…

  2. Char says:

    I’ve been cancelling so many people lately I’ll probably run out of people soon.

    Wow, where’s the self-awareness?

    • Jag says:

      Agreed! If she’s deflecting because something did happen to her and she doesn’t want to talk about it, she could have just said that she supports the victims and hopes justice is served to the perpetrators.

    • Maria says:

      I’m back to reading books-by women authors!

  3. Surely Wolfbeak says:

    I think she just inadvertently does not know how to use words.

  4. The Original Mia says:

    Her comments rubbed me the wrong way completely.

    • Pandy says:

      Agree. Between the women helping each other inadvertently! comment and then the starfish response – wow! Tone deaf. Not sure I buy that she wasn’t harassed either – maybe she was too out of it to remember? As someone else posted, she was a young child in adult situations with lots of substance abuse. Seems odd she wasn’t. Which is kind of awful to type.

  5. EOA says:

    I generally love Drew because she’s a survivor and I suspect she’s articulating the philosophy that works for her but I also agree with CB that anger can lead to resolve and to action. Those two things are not mutually exclusive. Sometimes people do get caught in anger that is destructive, though.

    And yes, I wish she hadn’t implied that it was her scrappiness that prevented an assault because it suggests that those who were assaulted weren’t scrappy enough. I don’t think she meant to blame the victims but it comes off as a little victim-blamey.

    • Bettyrose says:

      Do you mean a survivor of childhood substance abuse? Because that was my first thought. Like, does she even have a particularly clear memory of her party years? I can see why she might casually dismiss the topic if she’d rather not look back.

  6. Odetta says:

    Her comments make me think of terry crews’ story. Look at him! He’s ripped, I’m sure he’s very “scrappy”. It doesn’t matter who you are or how you act, sexual violence and harassment can happen to anybody….Any sex, race, ethnicity.

  7. Broken halo says:

    Hmmmm someone got you into drugs, Drew. Someone messed with you.

    • ArchieGoodwin says:

      Yes, someone clearly abused her.

    • Bettyrose says:

      I really think “scrappy” was code for “I’m not going to talk about this.”

    • Shambles says:

      You’re probably right, but for that reason, I think we should tread lightly. I don’t believe her when she says she wasn’t victimized, but it’s not my business. She doesn’t have to talk about it if she doesn’t want to, and yes she did choose a bad way to express it, but I think we should cut her some slack here. A lot of hard sh!t is coming up for a lot of people right now.

      • Bettyrose says:

        Shambles, ITA. and as I said above, I suspect there are sone chunks of time during her addiction years that she doesn’t have clear memories of. She has her own demons and doesn’t owe it to anyone to discuss publicly.

  8. Torontoe says:

    I just don’t like any comment which locates the “reason” for/against harasssment within the victim. The reasons why one person is targeted and another is not are probably many and the abuser himself is unlikely to really understand why. No amount of scrappiness will stop abuse. It’s mildly reminiscent of Mayim Bialik. But I like Drew so I’m going to believe no starfishes were harmed in this interview.

  9. tegteg says:

    I only skimmed the interview…. I don’t think she means to be offensive, but it’s clear she’s ignorant or just not able to articulate her thoughts very well.

    On a side note – I think she would look much better with short hair, like she had in the 90s.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      It could be she’s just not that bright. It happens.

    • lisa says:

      she’s wildly inarticulate and always has been. in her defense, she prob spent no time in school. however, she is filthy loaded and could either (1) get some education or (2) shut up and keep people in the dark about it

  10. OSTONE says:

    Oh Drew. It definitely feels like victim blaming “had they been scrappy like me, they wouldn’t have gotten assaulted or harassed”. And also, why shouldn’t we be angry at the many violations and transgressions men have perpetuated over and over again against women? So we can be “the bigger person?” So tired of that bullsht rhetoric. Her and Kate Winslet can go and have a stadium full of seats in their mansions and bask in their own privilege away from the rest of us.

  11. Bridget says:

    Drew is a child star – she has absolutely no formal education, and has spent her life insulated from the ‘real’ world. While she comes across as very sweet, she isn’t the smartest, and she’s not who I’m looking to for a coherent and well thought out statement. Shouldnt the question be: why are we expecting a woman who doesn’t even have a high school education to have a nuanced and well thought out statement?

    • Neelyo says:

      You said it better than me and much nicer.

      • Bridget says:

        Sometimes I think we forget how limited entertainers really are. Drew Barrymore has had a lot of personas over the year, and absolutely none of them were “smart”. Acting since she was a baby with a mother who was just as entrenched, I’d be amazed if she even had a middle school education.

    • Tired Owl says:

      Love this point of view. Yes, I totally agree. Our expectations of those whose talents are on public display are a bit skewed. Better to view them through the lens and prism of that which they are actually expert in.

    • adastraperaspera says:

      I like how you’ve said this. I do think by saying she was “scrappy,” she does add weight to the argument that the industry has been rife with pedophiles for decades, though, and that’s good. Wish we could go back in time and hear what Ethel Barrymore would have to say!

      P.S. Could Drew also be giving a breezy statement like this to protect an abuser?

    • HK9 says:

      I think what people were expecting was a little more thought and compassion-which you don’t need a formal education to have. However, her word choice indicates that self-reflection is not her strong point.

      • Bridget says:

        Compassion? Yes. But thought? Is Drew really capable of that much thought? She’s certainly never showed herself to be a particularly complex thinker.

      • HK9 says:

        Drew has a film production company, a cosmetic line and is the mother of a couple of great kids. Last time I checked, to keep that all running, you need think so yes I absolutely believe she can.

      • lucy2 says:

        I agree – you don’t need a degree to have compassion, or to understand what’s being talked about here.
        I doubt she meant any harm, she does seem like a sweet person, but what she said is problematic. I hope someone talks to her about why.

      • Bridget says:

        @HK9: that implies that Drew is doing the day to day work, though. Here’s a better question: why are you assuming that someone who doesn’t even have a high school education is actually running these companies themself? I don’t know much about Flower Cosmetics, but as far as the film production, her partner Nancy Juvonen is the experienced producer.

      • HK9 says:

        @Bridget-there are many people who have more practical experience than formal education in business. Since you don’t do anything alone, I’m not surprised she’s got partners who do have formal education & experience, but she’s not a ‘spokesperson’ only, she’s an actual partner. No I don’t know what her day to day duties are. If you want anything to be successful you not only bring your existing skills but you learn along the way so I don’t think she’s always as flighty as she might seem. I also don’t think she’s a Mensa member either-but yes you can run an actual business without high school. It’s been done.

      • Bridget says:

        Yes, plenty of people without a formal education run their own businesses. But you actually think Drew is one of them? Very, very few celebrities have actual, practical input into their businesses. They’re not getting into these ventures because of a love or a dream of that particular item. They go in because a business idea is presented to them and someone is interested in using their name and celebrity.

      • jwoolman says:

        This is the same woman who, with a history of alcohol and other drug abuse since an unusually young age, thought it was a good idea to get into the wine business. At first I thought she wasn’t going to actually drink the stuff… But yes, she was drinking it. Can’t imagine that nobody ever mentioned how risky that is for her.

    • Wren says:

      Yes, yes exactly. Why we keep looking for deep, intellectual, educated, well rounded thoughts from those who have had little education and no exposure to the world most of us live in is beyond me. Or why we’re all surprised when a famous person who famously didn’t finish high school says some ludicrously uneducated thing also boggles my mind.

    • magnoliarose says:

      Drew has never shown herself to be intellectually curious. She isn’t Natalie Portman or educated like Lupita. Some actors go to college before fame or during, but Drew didn’t, and it shows in her limited acting skills.
      I agree with you.

    • jenna says:

      Yes to all this. And a reminder that she was walking a red carpet when she was asked this. I really hate how we endlessly dissect and judge based on off-the-cuff answers to unexpected questions. It doesn’t sit right with me. Especially like “yep, she’s cancelled”, as if her entire reputation, life and career is suddenly soiled by some vaguely tone-deaf but generally innocuous comment on the red carpet. The gist of what she said was fine. It was just word salad. I would hate to be judged over harmless word salad.

      • Bridget says:

        I’m not one for “cancelling” someone for one mis-speak. But personally, I’m not a fan, and some of that has to do with The persona she puts on.

    • FF says:

      Tbh, it’s not the lack of a high school education that makes her inarticulate. Lots of people haven’t finished school and can articulate clearly. Her position of privilege means her views are considered even when she has none or can’t communicate them properly.

      She’s much like K.Stew.

  12. Renee2 says:

    Ugh. I mean she has always been ditzy, and I think that now she is going through this “I am a modest-dressing, earth mother phase”. She isn’t necessarily dumb, but she’s not the most insightful person either, and it must be hard to think on your feet to make an impactful statement. But as someone who hasn’t been assaulted, she has no right to tell others that they should not be angry.

    She really should have known better about the starfish though, she used to be vegan!!! And her response, posting her haircut, was really let them eat cake in tone.

  13. Tess says:

    Is she serious? Didn’t she marry her first husband when she was a teen? Didn’t she write that her mother was just not interested in being a mom and took her to Studio 54 as a small child and that’s where she first had drugs? Didn’t she plot her comeback by saying “I swore to all those people who made me eat it, one day they’d want me”? I mean if that’s her version of her memory that’s one thing, or maybe she’s just referring to her recent adult life. But just looking from the outside, early drug use and repeating relationship patterns are usually symptoms of significant childhood pain.

  14. LaraK says:

    Sure, or maybe you come from one of the most powerful families in HW and sexual predators moved on to less risky prospects.

    Go away!

  15. Truthful says:

    Man is she aging harshly or what ? In every way.

    Shut up lady . Take a seat and enjoy your bubble quietly!

  16. detritus says:

    I’ve always been ‘scrappy’. I fight back. I can ‘sh*t talk like a man’. I am not a shrinking violet. I don’t take disrespect from men.

    Until I was date raped and I didn’t have the tools to understand what happened. Until a man with a gun assaulted me and no ‘words’ were going to save me. Until I was grabbed from behind.

    All the scrappiness in the world cannot save you when someone larger and more powerful takes what they want, or takes you by surprise.

    A certain type of personality can help avoid extended abusive relationships, but the key word is ‘help’. scrappiness does not inoculate you from assault, and positioning it as such makes it seem like only ‘weak’ women are assaulted and I HATE that idea.

    Drew needs a chat with Terry C.

    • ell says:

      same, i’m scrappy, argumentative and not easily cowed and yet it happened to me.

      let’s just say DB was lucky, and that’s the word she should have used.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      Sympathies and outrage over what happened to you.

      Scrappy here too – and feisty! All the usual “plucky” words that are applied to women who manage to go beyond gender-normative submissiveness. Of course it happened to me.

    • magnoliarose says:

      I just think she doesn’t want anyone digging and hopes a flippant remark will be enough.

      I have been fortunate but even with luck things happened. I am not a hothouse flower or someone who comes across as accessible, but it doesn’t matter. Predators aren’t afraid of anyone, and they may weigh the risks, but anyone can come against a predator who doesn’t care how scrappy you are or how tough you can be. There is nothing a victim does to invite that type of behavior no matter how they are perceived.
      It is never the victim’s fault, or no one is weak if they are assaulted.

  17. JustJen says:

    If memory serves, she was an addict before she even hit puberty so…how can she be so sure? I’ve never really liked her, no particular reason, just something about her rubbed me the wrong way. This sealed it.

  18. Sway says:

    I feel the same way towards this as I felt towards Mayim Bialik’s comments.
    Dear famous ladies, you weren’t attacked ever not because you were scrappy or modestly dressed, but only and solely because YOU WERE L-U-C-K-Y! Period.

    • ell says:

      MB really did my head in though, far more than barrymore saying she avoided it because she’s scrappy. at least DB doesn’t pretend to be super smart and knowledgeable.

      • Otaku Fairy says:

        Agreed. Mayim Bialik’s essay was far worse.

      • kibbles says:

        Mayim should have actually known better. I never thought that Drew Barrymore was very smart, but Mayim loves to act as if she is one of the rare intellectual actresses out there who got a PhD from UCLA. That is why she thought she was smart enough to write an editorial for the New York Times, which deservedly blew up in her face.

        These women were not abused, very likely for a number of reasons, as well as luck. Maybe their parents or guardians were around that day a predator was hoping to attack. Who knows. I personally think they were all exploited and abused in some way even if they don’t believe that they were.

  19. Valiantly Varnished says:

    I get what she was trying to say but all her comment is doing is victim-blaming. So women who are scrappy don’t get assaulted or harrassed?? This is a really importang point in time and I really wish these celebs being asked questions about this would stop and think about what they are saying. There is no excuse for tone deaf commenta like this. Take a cue from Uma Thurman if you are angry or can’t find the words to express how you feel. That’s better than having to backpedal and apologize for saying something dumb.

  20. frisbee says:

    I’m also picking up the strong without being angry bit and it annoys the hell out of me. Women are allowed to be angry and strong and tough. Not being angry about centuries of being treated like crap is the very thing that’s kept women back, it’s also one of the very many claims made against feminists, that we are just angry, hateful, man haters. I agree with Gloria Steinem, we are not angry enough.

    • ORIGINAL T.C. says:


      Every minority or discriminated group in society has always been given the “angry” label when they stand up for their right to be treated with dignity. It’s meant to shame you into silence or passivity. As a Black woman I’ve notice that this tactic not only on us in the states but even outside of the US by dictators to suppress those without power. Unfortunately some within your own group buy into the myth the oppressors are selling.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      Anger is fabulous. Anger is motivating. Anger is appropriate. Anger is useful. Anger did not evolve as an emotion, an adaptive trait, solely in people with XY chromosomes.

      Men with righteous, justified anger = advocates, crusaders.
      Women with righteous, justified anger = shrews, bitches.

      • Trump Hater says:

        Beautifully said @Who are these People!
        I’ve had personal experience of that: when my husband and I decided to cut off his family because of their, shortly put, mentally abusive behaviour: guess who got called a “f-ing beeyatch” and “to get off your high horse”. Not my husband, their direct flesh and blood! It was me. As though being angry at someone treating you in an abusive fashion makes you a bad person.

    • frisbee says:

      You are both right, anger changes things and god knows, things need to change.

    • pinetree13 says:

      Yes to me that statement pings because it’s used in sexism and racism SO MUCH. Women should be demure. Women should gain rights by showing men how worthy they are by being more nurturing (seriously that used to be an argument). Don’t be the “angry black woman!”

      Basically don’t act angry because that disrupts the status quo and no one wants that. Stay in your place.

  21. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    She didn’t do or go far enough. I had this same conversation with my husband yesterday, that I could have leveled several lawsuits within the oil industry twenty years ago had current climates existed. I was ‘scrappy’ myself, sometimes had go full-on pit bull. The difference between me, and sadly so many women, I didn’t just worry about myself. Women can be so catty and rude to each other, and throughout the ages, they perpetuate gossip, alleged bad behavior, getting what they deserve, etc. You know what I’m talking about. But that’s been an enormous pet peeve of mine–women hating women. So I ‘pit-bulled’ every time I saw something. I felt very protective of others my whole life so all this crap bubbling to the surface now makes me so hopeful and proud. Not every woman is able (for whatever reason) to be overtly verbal or progressive or assertive or what a certain situation calls for at any given moment involving harassment of any kind. And they shouldn’t be diminished for that. Ever. Me being ‘scrappy’ is fine for me. But I’m not the only woman on the planet.

  22. noway says:

    Wow there are a lot of people the last few weeks stepping into it with comments I don’t think they mean to sound the way they are coming across. First I think her comment was kind of just a throw away, and not a lot of thought was put into. She didn’t think about how it would sound to victims. Second, I do get where she is coming from. I worked in media for a long time, and at some of the places these cases occurred, and it never happened to me either. So you start wondering why not me? How did I avoid this? She might be trying to explain it to herself.

  23. Wren says:

    Maybe this is how she processes everything. Everyone has coping strategies. Victims of sexual assault often engage in victim blaming behavior because it’s a way to distance themselves from what happened and take back a tiny measure of control over the situation. Everyone was shocked when a famous singer (I forget who) talked about her rape in terms of what she was doing and wearing and how she made herself vulnerable. People got so mad without even considering that that was obviously how she coped with it and made herself feel safe again. Safety is largely an illusion anyway. If someone is sufficiently determined to hurt you there’s not much you can do about it short of killing them.

    Drew was obviously part of a very famous and elite family, so perhaps that kept her safe to a certain degree. Or perhaps for whatever reason she wasn’t easy enough prey and therefore the predators moved on to someone else. Maybe someone was looking out for her and she wasn’t aware of it at the time. Maybe, for reasons unknown and perhaps sheer good fortune, she escaped. It’s not like there weren’t plenty of other kids around to choose from. *barf* It’s so nauseatingly horrible.

  24. Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

    For the longest time I knew only 2 things about DB: that she was in ET when she was a very young child, and that she started to smoke, do drugs or drink alcohol when she was 12, I don’t remember in what order, but she did say in interviews that she did all that. I refuse to believe that nobody took advantage of her when she was in her early teens. I refuse to. So she says she was “scrappy”? As it has anything to do with that. She was a vulnerable young girl, and as she admited herself smoking pot, drinking alcohol and oh boy, she was treated with respect but those other drug users and boozers and who knows how many abusers and rapists on the Hollywood party scene. Shut up.

  25. AngieB says:

    Someone send her Angelina Jolie’s speech with some cliff’s notes. (And I like drew Barrymore generally as she seems harmlessly silly usually but she’s also a business owner and has a movie production company. I’d hate for her to turn a blind eye because in her mind scrappy is all it takes. )

  26. happyoften says:

    It makes people feel safe thinking they have control over their lives in such a fashion. It is very hard for people to come to terms with their own vulnerability.

    Personally, I am pretty scrappy. In the military I scared off a few would be assaults, simply by being implacable. Didn’t help save me from the one I didn’t see coming. So, congrats! Drew, on not being assaulted, I am truly happy for you. Now, kindly stow it.

  27. Stacey says:

    I believe this may be true for her

    Coming from a famous powerful family may have insulated her as well
    And she may have been more “street smart” than your average starlet.

    • me says:

      I think the fact she came from a powerful, rich, well connected family might have helped keep the Hollywood pervs away.

  28. Myhairisfullofsecrets says:

    She always looks like she needs a shower and good exfoliant. Scrub, scrub, scrub.

  29. Squee says:

    As many others have said, find this hard to believe.

  30. Gelsgea says:

    You know what, eff all these negative comments. It’s difficult to craft a statement off the cuff that holds up to scrutiny from any angle. If you look at her history, the age at which she was in adult situations, there’s a high probability of trauma there. Using a quick line to derail that line of questioning is the same thing I would have done as an abuse survivor that can barely open the internet these days and still get out of bed. See her intent, accept it, and divert the negative energy to someone actually deserving.

  31. xena says:

    There are surprisingly many people out there who react with victimblaming and completely ignore that #metoo is about stopping the abusers and about helding them responsible for their actions and not their victims. I don’t understand how it is possible to basically miss the core point of this particular discussion.

    • Okie says:

      She is not victim blaming. She’s taking about herself and how handled things. She didn’t say that no one TRIED to harass her. Someone may have tried and she shut it down by being “scrappy”. Women should be “scrappy” and strong. Why allow ourselves to be seen as weak victims?

  32. Trump Hater says:

    Drew, maybe you do not remember? Considering that she was on drugs for a majority of her childhood, I find it difficult to believe that no one would take advantage of her, esp while she was under the influence of substances.

    I like Drew as an actress, She can play cutesy- funny rather well. But this was completely tone deaf and comes across as victim blaming! But if she doesn’t want to talk about it, it’s her right. As long as she didn’t actively aid and abet in anyone else’s abuse, I’m not gOing to throw stones at her.

  33. Jenn says:

    That quote is a weird way of building yourself up as cool and throwing other women under the bus because they’re less cool.

  34. Jenn says:

    A lot of women scrappier than her get “messed with”.

  35. Mrs.Krabapple says:

    This reminds me of Trump saying Ivanka would never allow herself to be harassed. As if all the women (and men) who have been harassed somehow had it in their own power to prevent it, and failed to do so. It’s blaming the victim.

    I actually like(d?) Drew because she never seemed offensive, and I want to see more female producers — I think having more women in power would help change the climate in Hollywood. But this was a real bonehead answer from her.

  36. Gigi says:

    Yeah, I’m calling BS. Who exactly financed Flower Films for you, Drew? AKA hush money. She knows where all the bodies are buried. Like Ivanka, Drew suffers from a mean case of Stockholm Syndrome.

  37. Patty says:

    I get what she is trying to say. Just like a get what Cranston was trying to say the other day. Cranston was not advocating for anyone to make a comeback, he was simply stating a fact, and he was right; it is possible that Weinstein and Spacey and others like them will come back & and he wasn’t wrong.

    Drew doesn’t see herself as a victim and there’s nothing wrong with that. She also made a comment that “brave women protect other women” in reading between the lines she is trying to get women to speak up and speak out right away; because that helps other women.

    And again she is not wrong. By staying silent we don’t help ourselves and we don’t help other women.

    • hilariouso says:

      There will be a Cranston shoe dropping soon. Wait till then to draw your opinion.

      Hint: teen girl extras & Malcom in the Middle

  38. SheBug says:

    She’s Hollywood royalty, from an established acting family. Some people may have kept their distance out of respect for her Dad/grandpa/whatever.

    She was a mess as a teen. People may have wanted to avoid being linked to her because of her bad rep.

    Alternatively, she may have been taken advantage of while high/drunk/passed out and just doesn’t remember it.

  39. Marianne says:

    Was it a poor choice of words? Sure. It would have been better to say she was lucky or just a simple no. But, unless you know the questions ahead of time it can be hard to come up with an answer on the fly and sound articulate.

  40. JRenee says:

    It’s her story to tell. I think she may have been under the influence and blocked some things from her memory.
    Her word choice is poor.

  41. djr says:

    she is allowed to speak on her own personal experience without it being a comment on that of others’. and i find it equally offensive to be called “lucky” when so much effort is put into not becoming a victim every day of life. sad that it has to be that way, but that’s the way it is – 15 years in the worst neighborhood in my city 5″0′ female and yes being “scrappy” helps

  42. Julaho says:

    I get the anger comment. Anger subsides, but turn that anger into strength and it can sustain momentum.

  43. Okie says:

    I think what she meant was that she firmly stood up for herself and made any man who tried regret it. It’s not wrong what she did. A big part of this is making women know they CAN stand up for themselves. A creep may try to do something but FIGHT BACK, whether it’s physically or with words. It does tend to be true that these creeps will prey on women they sense a weakness in (perceived or otherwise) or sense some kind of vulnerability in. It’s like what we were always taught about “how to walk” when you’re alone at night–be assertive, be strong, be purposeful and a would-be rapist is LESS LIKELY to go after you if they sense you will put up a fight. This works on predators in nature, it works with humans too. I think that’s what she meant, not an attack on victims. It’s also her right not to speak of what she may or may not have experienced and a red carpet is NOT the place to ask such a heavy question.

  44. hilariouso says:

    Being a Barrymore probably helped and Steven Spielberg’s goddaughter….juuuuust saying.

  45. Mina says:

    I think with the strength/anger comment she meant turning this into something positive and get stronger and more confident as women and standing our ground instead of just holding onto anger and not building something better with that. I think everyone is more than right to be angry, they should be angry, but also anger should be a fuel for change and improvement and not just something that will eat you up.

    As for the scrappy… I’m not even sure in what way she meant that word, and while anyone could be a victim of abuse under the right (wrong) circumstances, it’s also true that serial abusers usually look for vulnerable victims, not in the sense that they are weak but for example people without a strong support network or people that won’t feel confident speaking up. I always remember one part of the documentary The Keepers in which one of the priest’s victims explained that he always targeted girls with previous history of abuse because he was counting on the fact that they were already damaged enough to not dare denounce them and also had that horrible bug of feeling guilty and responsible in their abuse. I think Drew meant she would have been a “hard to handle” target, so to speak. That comes across wrong without a proper context, but I don’t think that was the appropriate place to bring up that subject anyway.

  46. This is self preservation. She was at studio 24 getting drugs and alcohol at age 12. Sorry, this is “ Messing around with her “ as a child. Then active at the “ soda club” Corey Feldman talks about. I do hope in the right setting she can come forward- her childhood is a sad story with an escort mother and drug addicted father. This was no storybook childhood- but maybe part of her mental health not to engage in the abuse discussion- you must be ready

  47. Her Higness says:

    her comment was misunderstood. predatory people can spot a victim, i dont know how, but I suspect they know a safe target when they see one. Drew is not a safe target, she is a well known super star royalty since ET…so even if she were not a feisty woman, I can see her being skipped over as a target/victim. I have also been told, as a 16 yr old girl (long time ago) that I dont need to worry about being attacked by a man bcuz Im 6ft tall…. I didn’t take offense, but being tall or scarappy wont keep the bad things from happening to you. but I get where she is coming from.