Social Question

janbb's avatar

What are your thoughts on the Dylan Farrow sexual abuse accusation?

Asked by janbb (51317points) February 13th, 2014

I tend to always believe the accuser but in Woody Allen’s response he makes many cogent points. We’ll never know the truth of whether it really happened. I’d just be curious to have you read the article and give me your opinion. It certainly seems like the acrimony between Mia Farrow and Woody Allen destroyed a family.

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52 Answers

BeenThereSaidThat's avatar

I believe Dylan was molested by Woody Allen. If you look at his history, his movies and even the people he dated (many of them) were children. When he was in his 40’s he had a relationship with a nineteen year old. Even the woman who was his adopted daughter was much younger than him when they married. Mia Farrow found out about the affair when her babysitter discovered nude photos that Woody Allen had taken of this girl (the one he married).

It makes me sick the way Hollywood fawns over this man. They should be ashamed of themselves. Woody Allen’s movies always seem to feature a grown man having an affair with a teenager. Did you ever see his movie “Manhattan”?

hearkat's avatar

If Ms. Farrow were so manipulative and the experts were agreeing that she coached a vulnerable young child to some extent, why did Mr. Allen not fight for custody of the children he loved so much to remove them from a psychologically abusive environment?

glacial's avatar

I’ve always thought that Mia convinced Dylan it was true. Maybe Mia even believes it on some level. But I don’t think he did it. Either way, it’s a sad story all around.

chyna's avatar

Of course there is no way to know what really happened, but I do find it odd that Woody would have waited until that point in time to molest the little girl.
@BeenThereSaidThat You make the comment that Woody dated a 19 year old while in his 40’s. Mia dated Frank Sinatra, a man much older than her when she was 19. So what is the difference?

Either way, if Woody did do it, or if Mia made it up and brainwashed a child just to get revenge, that girl, now a woman will have mental issues all her life.

ibstubro's avatar

Mr. Allen makes a compelling case. I also read the first opinion piece, and frankly, it seems to me unprofessional for and admitted friend of the family to give voice to accusations that can no longer be proven or disproved.

My disclaimer is that I have never liked Woody Allen or Mia Farrow. Professionally. What was Mia’s reason for refusing to take the same lie detector test as Woody passed? He was 56 in a relationship with a woman in her 20’s and makes a sudden, one-time attack on his 7 year old child in the attic room of his estranged wife? That’s “Flowers in the Attic” poor fiction.

“Moses is now 36 years old and a family therapist by profession. “Of course Woody did not molest my sister,” he said. “She loved him and looked forward to seeing him when he would visit.” is also pretty compelling. So he’s (possibly the only grounded member of the family) a 36yo family therapist, and a big fat liar?

I glad I didn’t know all this had resurfaced. Now that I know and have read the best shot of both sides, I believe Woody and I think Mia has tortured Dylan nearly her whole life. Looks to me that Mia couldn’t stand the Golden Globes award and looked up a well known writer friend to dredge up the unresolvable mess one more time.

One side of the story just gets bigger and bigger, and that makes the story farther and farther fetched: “It is our expert opinion that Dylan was not sexually abused by Mr. Allen. Further, we believe that Dylan’s statements on videotape and her statements to us during our evaluation do not refer to actual events that occurred to her on August 4th, 1992…” Child Sexual Abuse Clinic of the Yale-New Haven Hospital.

filmfann's avatar

@BeenThereSaidThat Even the woman who was his adopted daughter was much younger than him when they married.

Soon Ye was never Woody Allen’s adopted daughter. She is the adopted daughter of Mia Farrow and Andre Previn.

When I read Dylan’s statement, it immediately rang hollow. It sounded like something that was coached, though I don’t doubt the possibility that she actually believes it. I have read quite a bit about false memories, and this seemed to fit what I had read.
Reading Woody’s statement reinforces my opinion. This is the work of a spiteful woman. The situation (being in a cramped space), the timing (in a house full of people, during their seperation), and the doctors opinions (that this was a fiction) just convinces me that there was no molestation, with the possible exception of Mia on Dylan’s memory.

Cruiser's avatar

I think he is a brilliant writer/director who has countless times transcended the reality we are more comfortable with and taken us on journeys through humorous, terse, awkward and unreal visuals in his movies that takes us to places we never imagined to happen in reality.

This quote from the article tells me he is again trying to manipulate our better sense of judgment…
__” After all, I was a 56-year-old man who had never before (or after) been accused of child molestation.“_

All said from a man who courted and slept with and married his wife’s adopted daughter Soon-Yi

If he walks looks like a pedophile, makes excuses like a pedophile and struts like a pedophile….

ibstubro's avatar

I will agree, @filmfann, that the memories were implanted, and therefor there to stay. I believe that Dylan probably believes them, and they are now disprovable. That’s sad. Dylan also presents herself as an emotional cripple, but ”...happily married. I have the support of my amazing brothers and sisters.” Presumably including Moses?? The family therapist?

Okay. Dammit @Cruiser. I admit that ”56-year-old man who had never before (or after) been accused of..” gave me pause. I think it’s a case of lawyer-speak that Allen failed to edit.

filmfann's avatar

”56-year-old man who had never before (or after) been accused of..”

That quote seems to focus on what we have all heard about child predators: that they offend again.
Even after Michael Jackson was publicly embarrassed by accusations, he continued to put himself in positions that brought more accusations. (Now that is lawyer speak!)
The point that he had never before been accused, and hadn’t since, seems to indicate that this isn’t his MO.

glacial's avatar

Yeah, that thing about the cramped attic rings true to me (putting aside for the moment that he was deemed innocent by the Child Sex Abuse clinic). I simply cannot see Woody Allen, the guy who lives so completely in his head, and is so neurotic, calculating this act so that it could be managed so quickly that he wouldn’t be caught… and in a tiny attic! The guy is a claustrophobe! Not bloody likely.

I think a lot of people rush to judge him because they want to always believe the “victim’s story”. But the truth is that some people are falsely accused. Admitting that is not the same as saying that all such stories are lies.

turtlesandbox's avatar

I’ll believe Dylan until the day she says she lied. I know what it feels like to be sexually abused and have no one believe me. The hurt still lingers decades later.

It’s a shame that many women never speak out because they are afraid they won’t be believed.

glacial's avatar

@turtlesandbox But this is exactly what I’m saying. You believe her because you want to believe her. I’m seeing this sort of statement from a lot of people whose judgement I used to trust. But wanting her to be telling the truth doesn’t mean that her story is true.

Personally, I think it’s important that we don’t cling to the idea that every victim story must be believed because if one is wrong it might throw other victim stories into doubt. One false story absolutely should not influence anyone’s reactions to other people’s claims of abuse.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

I follow the careers of some stars and famous movie makers. I don’t really know why, but I have never been curious about their personal lives. I go to the movies or the theatre to watch a performance, and since I’m also an actor, I know what I am seeing is not who that person is in real, everyday life.

I may have an odd view of events I read about in the news, but personally, I was not present when things I read about or see on the news occurred, so I reserve judgement.

I have a good friend who was raped. In that case, I have a distinct opinion, because I helped him move out of the apartment he was sharing with the man who raped him. That’s a different level of involvement. My friend was shunned by many people in our larger circle of friends who consciously chose not to believe him. The abuse he received from people who had supported his efforts in other things was heinous. Victims of sexual crimes have a difficult time in the USA. Ultimately, his case was never prosecuted, and the rapist is free to this day having served no time at all.

With cases involving celebrities and other cases that are large enough to make the news, I simply reserve judgement.

turtlesandbox's avatar

@glacial I don’t know her, so I have no reason to doubt her. None of us do. I think it’s really sad that so many are believing Woody because of who he is.

glacial's avatar

@turtlesandbox I don’t know him, so I have no reason to doubt him. None of us do.

turtlesandbox's avatar

And? I just answered the OP’s question. I don’t understand why you need to nick pick my answer. I’m having flashbacks now to the time when no one believed me. It really sucks to be a victim.

Haleth's avatar

I believe her.

hearkat's avatar

@turtlesandbox – As you know, you are not alone. Last night, I had the first nightmare I’ve had in at least 7 years, and it was of my perpetrator assaulting me and me going up to people asking for help and being ignored. I thought I had pretty much put it all behind me, but for whatever reason, the beast reared its head again last night, and I’ve been in a funk all day.

Still, I don’t know who to believe in the case being discussed, and it is clear that the poor girl was victimized by at least one of the adults in the situation, so she certainly has my sympathy.

I don’t think @glacial is nit-picking on you personally, but just referencing your comment to point out that many of us are compelled to believe her statement out of sympathy, but that we generally shouldn’t let emotion cloud our opinions. He then noted that your statement that ‘none of us know her’ can be applied to the other side, as well. In situations like this, no one can really know the truth – especially this far removed from the events.

glacial's avatar

Thanks, @hearkat – I would only correct your post on the matter of my gender.

hearkat's avatar

@glacial – My apologies! I’m terrible at remembering that… perhaps I should make a list.

whitenoise's avatar

I have no idea what truly happened, but from what I read so far, I believe that Mr. Allen is not an innocent victim of a spiteful ex.

He may not be guilty of the abuse of Dylan, but even if he technically isn’t, he did help create the circumstances under which Dylan became a victim. Either from him, or from Mya Farrow’s psychological damage over the way he ran of with her daughter.

Either way, Dylan seems victim of WoodyAllen’s actions.

rojo's avatar

I am not in a position to judge. I simply do not know.

SavoirFaire's avatar

Since Allen and his supporters seem to be treading most of the same ground as Robert Weide did a few weeks ago, here’s a short list of common misconceptions used in Allen’s defense. In general, using the accused as one’s only source is not exactly the safest thing to do.

ucme's avatar

La dee dah.

turtlesandbox's avatar

@glacial I believe there are many more victims than there are falsely accused. What really bothers me is when people like you automatically assume the victim might be lying, especially when the accused is a celebrity. Dylan has more to lose here than Woody. She’s already a victim whether he abused her or not. Woody can retire and live on an island with his young life and no one would care. Dylan has to live the rest of her life with the lie she may have told or the pain from abuse.

LornaLove's avatar

It is really hard to say, as in all cases of criminal activity. I do think though he lost credibility all round when he married his adopted daughter. (Regardless if he adopted her or not, his role in their relationship was that of father; step-father). One wonders how long he had his beady eye on his adopted daughter. As I understood it, when Allen moved in Soon-Yi would have been around 9? __I think that point is pivotal and stand to be corrected__ That to me stinks of pedophile. Since how can you even view someone of that age as a possible lover, even if later on?

Another strange thing I find is that there were tons of naked photographs found of Soon-Yi taken by Allen. Is that really a start to a true romance? One that comes from the heart? Or one that comes from the ‘dick’?

janbb's avatar

@SavoirFaire Very good article. What a great deal of pain this – and all child sexual abuse – cases cause.

Cupcake's avatar

I read the points in the article @SavoirFaire linked to in a different article.

This blog post mostly sums up my thoughts, although I have slight concerns over people very publicly alleging sexual abuse in the court of personal opinion.

Frankly, my rapist was found not guilty by grand jury, so I don’t place a lot of value on the decisions of the criminal justice system.

syz's avatar

My only thoughts are to wonder about all of the articles written with absolute certitude (re: guilt or no guilt) by people who weren’t there.

ibstubro's avatar

I don’t think there is doubt that Dylan was a victim, @turtlesandbox. It seems unprovable whether she was abused physically by Woody or mentally by Mia.

All our opinions are colored by our life experiences. I broke completely with my parents 30+ years ago because my mother was emotionally and mentally abusive. There’s no way that that life experience cannot color my perceptions. However, in this case I thing the timing and details of the accusations greatly favor Woody. Mia seems to be fueling the flames.

I can’t stand Woody Allen and his celebrity, if anything, is a negative for me. Dylan is the daughter of Mia Farrow, i.e. a multimillionaire, not a resourceless victim. (“Woody can retire and live on an island with…”) Were she my child I would have constantly sought treatment rather than “creating the atmosphere of fear and hate” (Moses Allen).

Even today there are experimental drugs that can take the emotional sting out of the abuse and allow the victim to live a more normal life. I’m sure they’re available somewhere in the world, given enough money. Exactly what did it serve to dredge the whole thing up again at this time? It can’t be proven and continues to do Dylan as much, if not more, harm than Woody.

filmfann's avatar

@turtlesandbox What I hear you say is that you believe Dylan, because no one believed you.
I am sorry you went through that, and while your experience rightly influences your view of this matter, it should not dominate it.
A false accusation can be harmful to the accused, just as a genuine rape can be to a victim. Perhaps not as much, but enough that we should reserve judgement until we have definitive evidence, and that does not exist here.

glacial's avatar

@turtlesandbox I think you are misunderstanding me here. I would never “automatically assume the victim might be lying”. That is basically the opposite of what I said earlier. What I am saying is that we should not automatically assume that the accused is guilty. That is not the same thing. Where such a serious accusation is made, let us not make any assumptions at all.

I absolutely agree that Dylan is a victim in this situation, one way or the other. I don’t imagine any compassionate person can come to a different conclusion.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@LornaLove There may be ways in which the Soon-Yi situation bears on the issue of Dylan, but the reasons you give for thinking so are not good ones because nearly all of the claims you make are false.

Soon-Yi was not Woody Allen’s adopted daughter, and they had virtually no relationship at all until Soon-Yi was around 18 or 20 (it is unknown whether she was born in 1970 or 1972). By all accounts, including Mia Farrow’s, they barely interacted before then. Soon-Yi’s father figure was her actual father, André Previn. And finally, Allen never lived with Farrow.

I’m not saying that the situation isn’t a little odd—though I don’t think it’s as odd as people make it out to be—and I’m not here to defend Allen from Dylan’s accusations. But using myths about Soon-Yi that have long been debunked isn’t really the way to get at whatever the truth may be.

hearkat's avatar

@SavoirFaire – Please clarify: ”And finally, Allen never lived with Farrow.
Are you saying Woody Allen never lived with his then-wife Mia Farrow? Or do you mean that Soon-Yi Previn-Allen didn’t live with her adoptive mother, Mia Farrow, at the time that Ms. Farrow was married to Mr. Allen?

SavoirFaire's avatar

@hearkat Woody Allen and Mia Farrow were never married, and they never lived together. They had separate apartments, and Allen never stayed overnight at Farrow’s place.

SavoirFaire's avatar

Lest I be mistaken as moving over to Woody Allen’s side, however, here is an article containing various facts that do not speak well for his side of the story. The article includes, among other things, a response to the “lie detector test” canard so often trotted out in favor of Allen’s story.

hearkat's avatar

@SavoirFaire -I did not know that. I never cared for either of them as ‘artists’, and I generally don’t follow celebrity gossip. Interesting.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@hearkat There are a lot more rumors than facts floating around on all sides of this debate.

ibstubro's avatar

The sad thing to me is that Mia seems to be hell bent on keeping the whole thing alive and I believe that harms Dylan more at this point that Woody.

Which brings me full circle to agreeing with @turtlesandbox “Woody can retire and live on an island,” but from a different perspective: I believe Mia has used her money and influence to keep hurting Dylan to spite Woody, whether the accusations are true or not. They did not prosecute Woody, so nothing but spite is gained by re-visiting. Yes, Woody is at a time in his life where he can afford to create his own reality through wealth.

@SavoirFaire do you know why and who chose the picture of Dylan was in the award presentation?

flutherother's avatar

I think Woody Allen is a bit creepy and I wouldn’t leave a young child alone with him.

turtlesandbox's avatar

I do not believe Dylan because of what happened to me. Everyone assumed that by the few words I wrote here. If I really wanted to go into more detail here like others have I would have done so. There are many factors that lead me to believe Dylan. I just happened to add that I know what it feels like to be a victim that no one believes. We are all talking about people we don’t know and it seems like such a waste of time to pick at others’ opinions. I gave a simple opinion to the OP’s question and I really don’t care what anyone else thinks.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@ibstubro Having not seen the presentation, I had no idea what you were talking about. I’ve just watched it, however, and there are no pictures of Dylan in the short video they played before giving out the award.

@turtlesandbox I’m sorry for how some people have behaved towards you. It’s really quite shameful the way people will come up with any excuse to doubt someone who says they’ve been raped or sexually abused and to attack those who side with the victim.

glacial's avatar

@SavoirFaire Umm… no one has done that here. wtf.

ibstubro's avatar

I didn’t make it up, @SavoirFaire:
“Common sense must ask: Would a mother who thought her 7-year-old daughter was sexually abused by a molester (a pretty horrific crime), give consent for a film clip of her to be used to honor the molester at the Golden Globes?”

Perhaps the film clip used contained a clip with of Mia, rather than (as I believed) Dylan?

hearkat's avatar

@ibstubro: That was how I understood the comment when I read the article as well. It is a very poorly written sentence.

ibstubro's avatar

Agreed, @hearkat. For a minute there I thought I had misunderstood some other sentence and made a fool of myself. I had to do a LOT of re-reading to find it!

SavoirFaire's avatar

@ibstubro Mia Farrow gave the Golden Globes consent to use a clip from The Purple Rose of Cairo, in which she—Mia Farrow—starred. She did not give permission for a picture of Dylan to be used.

@glacial Please point to the place where I said “here.”

ibstubro's avatar

So Mia gives the nod for them to her picture in his tribute, then sets it up so that her daughter can air the accusations again, shortly after the tribute. Interesting.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@ibstubro She gave permission for them to use a clip from one of Woody Allen’s films that she was in. It’s likely that she couldn’t have stopped them anyway, and the permission was given well in advance of Dylan’s decision to speak out. In any case, the story originally came back into the public eye last November when a Vanity Fair writer decided to go out and interview the Farrow children. This was not done at Mia Farrow’s behest. And at that time, the story was more about Ronan. It was Ronan again who sparked the current furor by tweeting about the accusations on the night of the Golden Globes (which was ultimately what led to Dylan’s more recent open letter regarding the alleged abuse).

ibstubro's avatar

Excellent idea, but I don’t know if I want to be that invested in the whole thing, @SavoirFaire.

I found the lack of citations in the article criminal.

LornaLove's avatar

@SavoirFaire They were not my claims it was from an article I read in relation to this. I can’t find it now. It seems though yes indeed they did live apart then. Just as a side note. If I met a man (for example) and he had kids, regardless of age, I would see them as kids. No matter if they lived with me or not.

To my mind he would be the ‘dad’ they would be the ‘kids’. That includes when they reached 20.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@ibstubro Unfortunately, magazine articles rarely cite anything. I agree that it would be nice if they were held to at least a slightly higher standard. Even just a list of further reading at the end would be helpful.

@LornaLove Insofar as they are claims that you presented here, they are your claims. That’s all I meant by calling them yours. And yes, I understand why it seems odd for Woody Allen to have gotten involved with Soon-Yi no matter how close they may have been. Dating (and then marrying) your girlfriend’s daughter is a rather disgraceful thing to do and a downright appalling way to end a relationship. But I wouldn’t consider it criminal or evidence of a criminal mind.

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