'Riverdale' star Camila Mendes reveals she was drugged and sexually assaulted at New York University

Camila Mendes didn’t hold back in her Women’s Health cover story. The Riverdale star revealed she was drugged and subsequently sexually assaulted when she was a student at New York University.

“I got the tattoo after my freshman year,” the 25-year-old actress began in her interview with the magazine, referring to the “to build a home” tattoo above her rib. “I had a very, very bad experience; I was roofied by someone who sexually assaulted me.”

Mendes told Women’s Health in the story published online on Monday, September 9, that the tattoo serves as a reminder to “strengthen both her sense of self and the environment around her.”

“Whenever I feel like I’m going through something difficult, I think about what I can do physically for myself,” she explained. I danced for seven years, from age 4 to 11. Then I did musicals as a kid, then so much of acting school is movement classes and connecting your breath to your body. Activity has always been an important part of my life.”

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SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 21: Camila Mendes speaks at the "Riverdale" Special Video Presentation and Q&A during 2019 Comic-Con International at San Diego Convention Center on July 21, 2019 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 21: Camila Mendes attends the "Riverdale" Special Video Presentation and Q&A during 2019 Comic-Con International at San Diego Convention Center on July 21, 2019 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 20: Camila Mendes at the Entertainment Weekly Comic-Con Celebration at Float at Hard Rock Hotel San Diego on July 20, 2019 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Araya Diaz/WireImage)
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 20: Camila Mendes, Madelaine Petsch and Lili Reinhart attend the #IMDboat at San Diego Comic-Con 2019: Day Three at the IMDb Yacht on July 20, 2019 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for IMDb)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JUNE 22: Camila Mendes attends the POPSUGAR Play/ground at Pier 94 on June 22, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Lars Niki/Getty Images for POPSUGAR and Reed Exhibitions )
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 11: Camila Mendes arrives at the InStyle Max Mara Women In Film Celebration at Chateau Marmont on June 11, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
UNIVERSAL CITY, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 07: Camila Mendes attends the Moschino Spring/Summer 20 Menswear and Women's Resort Collection at Universal Studios Hollywood on June 07, 2019 in Universal City, California. (Photo by Donato Sardella/Getty Images for Moschino)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - MAY 13: Charles Melton and Camila Mendes attend the World Premiere Of Warner Bros "The Sun Is Also A Star" at Pacific Theaters at the Grove on May 13, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images,)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - MAY 13: Camila Mendes attends the World Premiere Of Warner Bros "The Sun Is Also A Star" at Pacific Theaters at the Grove on May 13, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images,)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 06: Camila Mendes attends The 2019 Met Gala Celebrating Camp: Notes On Fashion - Arrivals at The Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 6, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Rabbani and Solimene Photography/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 06: Charles Melton and Camila Mendes attend The 2019 Met Gala Celebrating Camp: Notes on Fashion at Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 06, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Coppola/MG19/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue )
JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE! - "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" airs every weeknight at 11:35 p.m. EDT and features a diverse lineup of guests that include celebrities, athletes, musical acts, comedians and human interest subjects, along with comedy bits and a house band. The guests for Wednesday, April 10, included Jeremy Renner (Marvel's "Avengers: Endgame"), Camila Mendes ("Riverdale"), and musical guest Alice Merton. (Randy Holmes via Getty Images) CAMILA MENDES, JIMMY KIMMEL
BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 24: Camila Mendes attends 2019 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Hosted By Radhika Jones - Arrivals at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on February 24, 2019 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Daniele Venturelli/WireImage)
ATLANTA, GA - FEBRUARY 02: Camila Mendes attends the 8th Annual NFL Honors at The Fox Theatre on February 2, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
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Mendes, who rose to fame playing Veronica Lodge on The CW series, also addressed her struggles with bulimia in the cover story.

“I’ve only recently gotten better. I needed professionals I trusted to tell me things that I didn’t know,” the Perfect Date actress admitted. “When I was a teenager, there were no role models when it came to body positivity—that simply was not a thing. Being thin was the thing.”

Mendes added that she aims to be the type of role model she wished she had growing up.

“It’s health that’s important, not appearance,” she said. “I make choices that are good for me—and not just in my body—but for my soul, for my mind. And sometimes that’s eating ice cream because I want to eat ice cream.”

Last month, the Coyote Lake star and costar Charles Melton, who plays Reggie on Riverdalecelebrated their first anniversary. Mendes told the magazine that she’s currently “living on such a high.”

“But it’s not going to be up forever,” she noted. “There’s going to be a plateau. And there’s going to be a moment where it maybe goes down, and I need to be prepared for that.”

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