Karen Huger shared her story of being sexually assaulted as a young college student during Sunday night's episode of The Real Housewives of Potomac. Though Karen said while speaking at an event for Promoting Awareness | Victim Empowerment (PAVE) that the incident nearly ruined her life and put her on a "self-destructive path as a youth," she now feels "empowered" and is doing everything she can to make sure others feel the same.
The RHOP grand dame told Page Six in advance of the episode airing that she wanted to open up about her struggles on the show to help others who may have gone through a similar experience. “I am put in a very wonderful position to show that when adversity comes your way it doesn’t stop you, it can propel you,” she said. “It is my responsibility to be real. I have no shame and I carry no burden because of what happened.”
Karen described the incident as "a typical date that totally went off the rails." The RHOP mom of two went on to say that forgiving her attacker, whose name she "will never reveal" but who she said "was a public figure," has helped her be able to move on. “If he were alive today it might be a different story,” she said. “I’d like to have it out with him. But I forgave him a long time ago, that is why I lead I life I do today, forgiveness is a part of it.”
Karen has now worked with PAVE, a nonprofit organization that aims to prevent and raise awareness of sexual violence through social advocacy, education, and survivor support, for three years. Through her work with PAVE, Karen said she hopes to help other survivors of sexual assault find strength after tragedy. “I have had a full life now [and] I did it victoriously, that’s the message I want: there are choices we can make – I chose empowerment," she told Page Six. "It wasn’t easy but I choose to be among the empowered.”
The RHOP grand dame also opened up about her involvement with PAVE in her latest blog on Bravotv.com and said that she was thankful that her fellow RHOP ladies put all of their drama aside to support this important cause. "Pave is an organization very dear to me. What I admire about all of these ladies is their ability to put aside the pettiness and come together to support one another," Karen wrote. "It was comforting to have my friends in the audience. I am grateful for their love and support."
The RHOP ladies continued to send their love to Karen on Twitter during the episode.
Check out another moment from the night, below.