Duffy has penned a harrowing account of being drugged, raped and held captive, which led to her “hiding” for the past decade.
The “Mercy” singer had first spoken about what happened in February, but on Sunday night (April 5) published more details on her website duffywords.com, which she linked to from her official Instagram page. She provided readers with a trigger warning and then described her distressing experience.
“It was my birthday,” Duffy wrote. “I was drugged at a restaurant, I was drugged then for four weeks and travelled to a foreign country. I can’t remember getting on the plane and came round in the back of a travelling vehicle. I was put into a hotel room and the perpetrator returned and raped me.”
“I remember the pain and trying to stay conscious in the room after it happened. I was stuck with him for another day, he didn’t look at me, I was to walk behind him, I was somewhat conscious and withdrawn. I could have been disposed of by him,” she said.
Duffy continued: “I contemplated running away to the neighbouring city or town, as he slept, but had no cash and I was afraid he would call the police on me, for running away, and maybe they would track me down as a missing person. I do not know how I had the strength to endure those days, I did feel the presence of something that helped me stay alive. I flew back with him, I stayed calm and as normal as someone could in a situation like that, and when I got home, I sat, dazed, like a zombie. I knew my life was in immediate danger, he made veiled confessions of wanting to kill me. With what little strength I had, my instinct was to then run, to run and find somewhere to live that he could not find.”
Duffy said that upon her return home, someone she knew described her as “like a dead person.”
“They were obviously frightened but did not want to interfere,” she wrote. Duffy explained that she, too, was frightened. She feared she was in danger and would be killed, so she did not go straight to the police.
She has since reported the terrifying experience to the police — although the first person she told was her psychologist — and says “the identity of the rapist should be only handled by the police, and that is between me and them.”
“The thought of recovering was almost impossible,” Duffy, who said she was “on the run” and relocated several times afterward, “never feeling safe from the rapist.”
Duffy says she feels safe now, but does not yet have a set plan to return to music: “What follows remains to be seen … I know this much though, I owe it to myself to release a body of work someday, though I very much doubt I will ever be the person people once knew. My music will be measured on the merit of its quality and this story will be something I experienced and not something that describes me.”
Her 2008 hit single “Mercy” reached No. 27 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 4 on the Adult Alternative Songs airplay chart. She sold 2 million downloads of the song in the U.S., according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data. Her album Rockferry debuted and peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 and sold more than 900,000 copies. Duffy was nominated for three Grammys in 2008 and won one, for best pop vocal album (Rockferry).
Read Duffy’s full account on her website.