Watching her on the red carpet, it’s hard to imagine there was ever a time when Thandie Newton wasn’t seen as one of the most beautiful actresses to grace the big screen. But in a recent interview, Thandie opened up on how her insecurities as a teenager caused her heartache at the hands of an older man.

Speaking to InStyle magazine, the actress and Olay spokeswoman opened up about an affair she had with a John Duigan, a Hollywood director 23 years her senior. According to Thandie, the six year affair began when she was just 16. At the time the met, the young actress was auditioning for a role in the movie, Flirting, which starred Nicole Kidman.

Saying she was taken advantage of by the older Duigan, Thandie says her 16 year old self was too young to fully have an equal say in the relationship.

‘I was a very shy, very sweet girl. I wasn’t in control of the situation. Would I have liked things to be different? Sure.’

Still, she does not regret the experience saying to some extend it growing past it has helped her become stronger:

‘But I can now value myself more for the way I got through it. I don’t see myself as a victim. Part of me feels grateful I can accept the difficulties that came with that situation and be a more compassionate person myself.’


Often reclusive and shy when it comes to talking about her private life, Thandie says she decided to open up about the affair ‘so teenagers can see they can resist and gain self-awareness’.

When she was asked whether or not she considered pursuing legal action against Duigan, Thandie said:

‘I am my own supreme court. I judge that one. And in a strict legal way there might not be a case.’

Thandie opening up resonates with many women who can see a piece of their story in her own. For many teenagers, falling for an older man and carrying out a relationship with him can prove a confusing and overwhelming experience. Often times, it is only in looking back, do women see the emotional distance and maturity difference that may often contributed to manipulative or destructive partnerships. Still many believe that if they are mature enough, a young woman who consents to a relationship with an older man can have a viable and healthy relationship.

What are your thoughts on Thandie opening up on dating an older man while still a teenager? Can healthy relationships form given the age gap or are the old-young pairings doomed from the start? Tell us what you think Clutchettes- share your thoughts!

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