Known for being one of the activist actresses fighting racism, LGBTphobia and violence against women, Charlize Theron once again spoke about a personal drama that changed her life more than 30 years ago. She said that to this day she still hasn’t overcome the trauma of seeing her mother, Gerda Maritz, shoot and kill her father, Charles Theron, in self-defense, and that this suffering led her to commit to social issues and, mainly, in defense of gender. .
“I would say this: it’s a simple correlation to make. But I think it’s much more complicated than having just one night of trauma in your life. With or without that, gender-based violence is very present in South Africa and the world. It’s difficult to go through these things just because you’re a woman. It’s still difficult,” says the actress, who has a foundation: Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project.
Charlize recalled the episode that happened in 1991. She was 15 years old and lived under threat from her father, an alcoholic man. “One night, my dad was so drunk he shouldn’t have been able to walk when he came into the house with a gun. My mom and I were in my room leaning against the door because he was trying to break in,” she began.
She continued the story in an interview with Town & Country. “So we both leaned against the door from the inside so he couldn’t get through. He took a step back and shot through the door three times. None of the bullets hit us, which is just a miracle.”
So that Maritz could save herself and her daughter, she killed her husband. As the crime was committed in self-defense, Charlize’s mother was not charged.
Charlize explained that her father was a “very sick man” his entire life. “I only knew him one way, as an alcoholic. It was a pretty desperate situation. Our family was kind of stuck in it. And the day-to-day unpredictability of living with an addict is something you feel and that gets embedded in your body through rest of my life, more than just this event that happened one night”, he lamented.
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