Housewife copes with PTSD from sexual assault by becoming a prostitute

If my description below sounds interesting but unfamiliar you should stop reading before the last paragraph.

This was a colour, live-action movie in English (probably American) I saw in the ’90s. A woman is raped but is able to identify her attacker to the police, only to be traumatized again when her attacker is given a relatively light sentence.

This negatively affects her relationship with her husband and kids, but she manages to carry on after falling into and then actively constructing a second life for herself as a prostitute when her husband is at work and the kids are in school. There are moments when she’s almost caught and has to think quickly to keep her secrets. It appears to start as a form of escape, allowing her to pretend to be someone other than a victimized housewife, but her new life starts becoming her real life and her old life starts feeling false and distant.

The whole idea seems far-fetched but I started buying it as the movie went along. In the end …



(Stop reading here if you think you might want to watch this movie.)



… her new friends — other prostitutes, shopkeepers, bar owners, various other people from this seedier part of town — have become almost like a second family, and her close relationships with them allow her to walk into a bar one afternoon, walk right up to her former attacker as he’s being welcomed back from prison by his (and her) friends, and shoot him dead. Fade to black (I did not see that coming at all but it was enormously satisfying). I no doubt have some details wrong there, but please let me know if you recognize this movie.

3 thoughts on “Housewife copes with PTSD from sexual assault by becoming a prostitute

    1. That’s not it, SecularSurfer, but thanks very much for the suggestion. Catherine Deneuve in a Luis Bunuel movie? I’ll definitely have to check that out.

  1. Damn, I remember watching this with my mom when I was a kid (can you say age inapropriate?) but can’t remeber the name.

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