It took twenty years, but Dylan Farrow has finally found her voice. Struggling through years of silence and stigma the young woman overcame all of that last week, when she decided to finally speak out against her adoptive father. While some may remember the young girl from twenty years ago, others are just now learning of her shocking accusations. Dylan Farrow, daughter of Mia Farrow has made the claim that her then adoptive father Woody Allen molested her when she was seven years old. Now, twenty years later, Dylan — who has asked people to call her Malone — has come forward to confront her molester and set the record straight.
Ever since the accusations were first made, Farrow has been accused of everything from making it up, to simply being a pawn in her mother’s separation and custody case. Farrow however, has stuck by her story. She has detailed the horrors in a very open and public letter to the editor, of the New York Times. Farrow made it known that the only way she could possibly be empowered, was to finally stand up and confront the man who she claims ruined her life.
Was she the first person to make these accusations, though? Another young girl made the claim around the same time that Farrow first publicized her accusations. This young woman, Nancy Jo Sales, stated that she had a long, personal relationship with Allen when he was 42, while she was just 12 years old. With battle lines drawn, Farrow has found few supporters on her side; the majority of Hollywood is coming out in support of Allen. This is another detail that Farrow draws attention to, in her letter. She calls out friends of her father who either through their silence or through their open support, added to — in her words — the continued abuse she suffered every time he made the news for some accomplishment.
Farrow’s letter makes a compelling argument for support, when she asks Allen supporters to consider her side of the story. She takes it a step further by detailing the abuse, so that readers have a real glimpse into the horror she suffered. Furthermore, she asks her readers take an honest look at Allen, and what makes him so popular today. The only bright spot in the whole ordeal, Farrow says, is her mother’s unwavering support. Mia Farrow has promised to stand by her daughter no matter what. Her brother Ronan Farrow — the biological son of Mia Farrow and Woody Allen — like his sister, also called out Allen this week, demanding his father pays for his actions. Victims’ rights advocates will note that by finding a voice for her story, even through an open letter, Dylan Farrow can begin the healing process.
With passions reignited in this case after twenty years, lawyers for Allen released a statement saying that it all comes back to a vengeful lover. Mia Farrow engineered these and earlier accusations, the lawyers claim, standing by an independent investigation into the original story. However the Connecticut Attorney General stated that he fully intended to bring charges against Allen, citing that evidence his office held was enough to go to trial. Charges were dropped, however, after Mia Farrow and Dylan Farrow refused to go forward with the investigation. In her letter, Dylan Farrow states that if she had the opportunity to go back and talk to the young girl she was, she would have encouraged that child to go forward with the trial, be strong and bring her abuser to justice.
While it is doubtful that anyone will ever know for certain what really happened twenty years ago, Dylan Farrow can feel confident that she has finally found her voice again. No more cowering in the corner, no more violent ill reactions at simply hearing his name. Farrow is finally empowered, and all she had to do was find her voice.
By Rachel Woodruff