Lady Gaga Is Honored in NYC After Speaking Out About Being a Survivor of Rape

Lady Gaga hit the town in NYC on Friday and was spotted leaving her hotel with fiancé Taylor Kinney. The couple headed to the annual Billboard Women in Music event, which honored the singer, actress, and activist as its woman of the year. Upon hearing the news last week, Gaga told the publication, "This is the year I did what I wanted instead of trying to keep up with what I thought everyone else wanted from me." On the red carpet, she posed solo in a two-piece silver ensemble, as well as with her frequent collaborator Tony Bennett.

Before making her way to the Billboard bash, which also brought out Selena Gomez, Demi Lovato, and Ciara, Gaga joined famed songwriter Diane Warren on Thursday night at a TimesTalks event for the documentary film The Hunting Ground, for which Gaga sang the theme song, "Til It Happens to You." While speaking to the crowd about the impactful movie — it focuses on sexual assault and rape culture on college campuses — Gaga shared her own traumatic story, saying, "I didn't tell anyone for, I think, seven years. I didn't know how to think about it. I didn't know how to accept it. I didn't know how not to blame myself, or think it was my fault. It was something that really changed my life. It changed who I was completely."

Gaga also revealed that the pain took a toll on her physical and emotional health: "It changed my body. When you re-experience it throughout the years after it, it can trigger patterns in your body of physical distress." She added, "Because of the way that I dress, and the way that I'm provocative as a person, I thought that I had brought it on myself in some way. . . . That it was my fault."