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Reese Witherspoon recalls an experience with an abusive ex

And how it changed her life forever.
Reese Witherspoon SAG Awards Red Carpet
Reese Witherspoon at the SAG Awards. Getty

Reese Witherspoon — champion of Time’s Up, the Madeline Martha Mackenzie who lives forever in our hearts — is opening up and it’s kind of huge.

Witherspoon sat down with her "A Wrinkle in Time" co-stars Oprah Winfrey — also known as the woman who will never be our president — and Mindy Kaling for Winfrey's Super Soul Sunday series. For some reason, they're all wearing pink pastel sweaters. It's soothing!

Anyway, the 41-year-old "Big Little Lies" star shared that one of the most difficult decisions she ever faced was leaving an abusive relationship. And it changed who she was as a person — for the better. 

“I drew a line in the sand, and it got crossed, and my brain just switched,” Witherspoon said, adding that the abuse she experienced was both psychological and verbal. “I couldn’t go any further. I was really young, and it was profound.”

She added, “It changed who I was on a cellular level, the fact that I stood up for myself. It’s part of the reason I can stand up and say, ‘Yes, I’m ambitious.’ Because someone tried to take that from me.”

She continued to say that her experience was a big part of why "Big Little Lies" was so important to her.  "It was incredible how when we did 'Big Little Lies,' how we would sit around, all the women, and talk about [how] each one of us had very specific experiences," she said. "It was a range of experiences, but there wasn't a woman there that hadn't been affected by abuse. And it's why we decided to make this show." 

It's important to note that Witherspoon is being really careful here — but she may very well be talking about this ex-husband of hers, who has faced abuse allegations in the past, some as recently as last year. She also mentions the relationship happened when she was young — and she and said ex-husband got together when she was about 21. So, hypothetically, it adds up.

But really, to come out with an experience like that is super brave so. Thank you, Reese.