Monica Lewinsky, the former White House intern who is best known for having an affair with then-President Bill Clinton, says it’s time to “burn the beret and bury the blue dress.”
The reference – which alludes to the outfit Lewinsky had worn during a sexual encounter with the president in 1997 that had a stain containing Clinton’s DNA – is one reflection on her relationship with the president that Lewinsky offers in an article she authored for the June issue of Vanity Fair.
Lewinsky, who is now 40, writes that she “deeply” regrets the affair. But breaking 10 years of silence on the matter, she writes that it was consensual.
“Sure, my boss took advantage of me, but I will always remain firm on this point: it was a consensual relationship. Any ‘abuse’ came in the aftermath, when I was made a scapegoat in order to protect his powerful position,” she writes, according to excerpts published on Vanity Fair’s website. “The Clinton administration, the special prosecutor’s minions, the political operatives on both sides of the aisle, and the media were able to brand me. And that brand stuck, in part because it was imbued with power.”
Lewinsky says she was motivated to tell her story after the suicide of Tyler Clementi, a Rutgers freshman who was secretly recorded having a sexual encounter with another man. Her own reaction to the public scandal surrounding the affair was to have strong suicidal temptations due to the shame and scorn she felt, although she never actually attempted suicide.
Clementi’s death motivated her to think about her story in a different light.
“Perhaps by sharing my story, I reasoned, I might be able to help others in their darkest moments of humiliation. The question became: How do I find and give a purpose to my past?” she writes. She say she wants to get involved with “efforts on behalf of victims of online humiliation and …..
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