Moore appears on the radio show to promote her new memoir, "Inside Out."
While much of the stories in the press about Demi Moore's tell-all book, "Inside Out," have focused on the dirty details of her marriages to Bruce Willis and Ashton Kutcher, Howard Stern asked about nearly everything but those two exes when she appeared on his radio show on Wednesday.
Instead, he spent a large chunk of time asking Moore about her troubled childhood, being raped as a teenager and the affect both of those had on her life going forward.
Moore and Stern bonded over how strange it feels to go on a publicity tour for a book, where you're mainly reiterating what you've already written about. "You're going back to reframe and more of what you kind of said," explained Moore, "it's like being that vulnerable all the time." Explaining the intention of her book was to hopefully be "of service" to others, Moore said she wasn't sorry at all about anything she revealed in the book. Though she said some of it has been "sensationalized" in the media since its release, she believes "the overall message has so outweighed any of that."
In her book, Moore said that when she was 15 living with her then-single mother, a much older man began hanging around. One day, he invited himself into her home when she was alone and raped her. When he was finished, she said the man asked her, "How does it feel to be whored by your mother for five hundred dollars?", though she never knew for sure whether her mother ever made any such transaction.
Speaking in more detail about how she felt in that moment to Stern, she recalled feeling "trapped" at the time. "I knew what he had been kind of leaning in to want and I was pulling away," she told him. "I felt trapped, I didn't want and I was clear that I didn't. I felt like it was my fault. I felt like I had behaved in a way that was mature, like I really knew a lot. I never really looked at myself as being a kid. I never looked at it as rape. I saw it as unfortunate, I was very embarrassed by it."
Howard asked if the man who did it was still alive and she said he wasn't. Stern then asked if she knew whether the man had any family living. "He used to, when it started to move into this weird place, he would say to me he had daughters my age," she told him. "He would say, 'but you're not good enough to be around them.' What a horrible thing."
The host brought up the man claiming she was "whored out" by her own mother and how it was even possible for her to be at peace with her mom later in life. "I would have said, 'F--k you, you old bag,'" said Stern.
"I don't think it was a conscious exchange. I think it was an unconscious one that, no matter what, she gave him the key," Demi replied. "I never said anything to her. I think I felt so much shame, I took action and I moved out, two days later. Forgiveness is essential to our well being. I do know my parents were doing the best they could. I think they didn't have tools, they didn't have a language [to be better parents]."
Below are a few more takeaways from the interview:
Moore said she did beat herself up a bit after failing to land Kelly McGillis' role in "Top Gun" opposite Tom Cruise. "I think it was just the timing of things. I think the first audition was great and the screen test, I shanked, I got in my head," she told Howard. "I think I just got nervous of the whole and I didn't own it." After seeing the film, she said she thought, "I could have really done that one. But in my beating myself up, it then just reinforced the idea that I didn't think I was good enough."
When Stern asked whether it "aggravated" Moore to see so many other female celebrities copy her iconic nude Vanity Fair cover during their pregnancies, she said she loves it. "I love seeing it. I love it, it's incredible and complimentary," she said. "I like that we have the freedom to express that."
She was shocked by the bad reviews "Ghost" got when it was released. "I was so shocked because I had watched it, I was with other people and we all had the same feeling. I thought it was really great," she said. "I must really be missing something, what are they seeing that I'm not? There were too many people, smart people, who felt the same way I did." She added that she hasn't watched the movie in 25 years and while her daughters have seen it, she didn't view it with them.
Howard also brought up Moore's appearance as the Top 10 list on David Letterman, where she showed up in a bikini and performed a striptease of sorts for the audience. "I definitely was uncomfortable being in the bathing suit," she said, noting that it had nothing to do with Dave himself but her own insecurities.