Melissa Benoist is using her platform to speak about domestic violence after her ex-husband, Blake Jenner, made new allegations about their past marriage.
“I’m really excited to talk to you about a number of different things and most importantly because I think it’s so personal to me. Last year in April, you announced the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act which is a matter very close to me because I have experienced domestic violence personally, I’ve spoken out about it,” the Supergirl star began via Instagram Live with Congresswoman Karen Bass on Saturday, October 17.
Benoist, 32, was previously married to Jenner, whom she met on the set of Glee, from 2015 to 2017. While the actress first spoke out about being in an abusive relationship in 2019, the actor confirmed that she was referring to their marriage earlier this month. After Jenner, 28, admitted that he “emotionally, mentally and yes, physically” hurt Benoist, he accused her of being abusive too.
“I, too, have had to conceal and make up lies about many visible injuries I had incurred throughout the relationship,” he wrote via Instagram. “There are many things that I wish I could have done differently; and while I wish it did not take the pain that was suffered throughout the course of our relationship, I will never regress to making the same mistakes ever again.”
Benoist, for her part, has yet to publicly respond to Jenner’s recent claims. She told Bass on Saturday, however, that it’s “so vital and important” for domestic violence resources to be available for all.
“Especially in these times — I mean, the rates of domestic violence occurrences are just skyrocketing right now because we’re all stuck at home,” she explained. “I mean in my situation, I was lucky enough, I had the means to get out myself and to really pick myself up but I can’t even fathom not having the resources or the programs if I hadn’t had the means that I did, having the job that I had at the time when I got out of the relationship I was in. I just can’t imagine those resources not being there for women.”
Benoist and Jenner finalized their divorce in 2017, and she married Chris Wood in September 2019. A year later, the CW costars welcomed son Huxley.
“He’s the best. I am loving being a parent, I love being a mom, he’s such a sweetheart,” Benoist told Bass about her newborn. “He’s already so big and every day I’m like crying because he’s gained half an ounce.”
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 for confidential support.