RHODubai’s Chanel Ayan Opens Up About Surviving Forced Genital Mutilation at Age 5

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In addition to the physical pain it caused her throughout her adolescent and teenage years, the experience left long-lasting emotional scars.

“I think the trauma is something that I will live with for the rest of my life,” Ayan said. “This is why I want to talk about it, because I honestly don’t want this to happen to anyone because I know exactly how it feels and it’s not good. A lot of girls get depressed, hormones are imbalanced, a lot of young girls die.”

Ayan says this is “the first time most of my friends and family will actually see that I’m talking about” the traumatic experience.

“We don’t share things like this, it’s kind of kept quiet in our families,” Ayan explained. “I just feel like after opening [up about] it, I was taking my power away from the people that did this to me that I trusted the most because I was five years old and I did not know what was happening to me. I didn’t even know what was going on. I just want to bring awareness to it as much as possible because it’s still happening 35 years later. Every 11 minutes it’s happening to some little girl that is as confused as me.”

The Bravo star is even starting her own makeup line, Ayan Beauty, to raise proceeds to help put an end to this harmful practice.

“As long as I use my platform to bring awareness to stop this—if I can save 20 girls, 100 girls, 500 girls, I feel like that’s the purpose I have,” the RHODubai star said. “It’s child abuse. And a lot of girls just die for no reason.”

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