On Tuesday (May 7), rapper/actor Common released his second memoir, Let Love Have the Last Word, and he is laying his heart and soul on the table in the hopes of encouraging and inspiring others. One of the most shocking things revealed in this book is the fact that he was sexually molested by a family friend, when he was only 9-years-old. Even more shocking is the fact that he didn’t even process the thought himself until just a couple years ago, according to Billboard.

Common, now 47, was preparing for his role in the film The Tale with actress Laura Dern when the memories came to him unexpectedly. “One day, while talking through the script with Laura, old memories surprisingly flashed in my mind,” he begins. “I caught my breath and just kept looping the memories over and over, like rewinding an old VHS tape. I said ‘Laura, I think I was abused.'”

He then begins to recall the incident, which happened during a family trip to Cleveland. He details the moment he was molested by the family friend, who he describes under the alias of “Brandon.”

“I was excited for a road trip I was about to take with my family. My mother; my godmother, Barbara; her son and my godbrother Skeet; and his relative, who I’ll call Brandon.

At some point I felt Brandon’s hand on me. I pushed him away. I don’t remember saying a whole lot besides ‘No, no, no.’ He kept saying ‘It’s okay, It’s okay,’ as he pulled down my shorts and molested me. After he stopped he kept asking me to perform it on him. I kept repeating ‘No’ and pushing him away. I felt a deep and sudden shame for what happened.”

After locking away the painful memories for years, the Grammy/Oscar winning artist is now seeking therapy to move forward with healing, and he is now encouraging others to do the same. Check out what he told TMZ in the video above.

We also encourage anyone who have suffered from sexual abuse to reach out for help. For resources, check out the National Sexual Assault Hotline at online.rainn.org or call at (800) 656-HOPE (4673).