Mattie Larson: I Bashed My Head to Escape Larry Nassar

Former gymnast Mattie Larson told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos Thursday that she bashed her head against a bathtub in a desperate attempt to finally pry herself from the clutches of serial sexual abuser Larry Nassar. Larson read her victim-impact statement this week at the former USA Gymnastics team doctor’s seven-day sentencing hearing. She described how she was abused by Nassar repeatedly when she was just 15 years old, and she could not bear the thought of returning to the Karolyi Ranch national training site in Huntsville, Texas. And so she injured herself. “I was crying, panicking, didn’t want to go [back]. I was taking a bath. It wasn’t even a hard decision in my mind. I just turned on survival mode,” Larson said on Good Morning America. “I banged my head as hard as I could to make sure that I got a bump and to make sure that my parents heard the bang.” Larson said she didn’t know how to verbalize—at that age—what was happening to her, but knew she couldn’t endure it any longer. “It wasn’t an option for me. I didn’t know I could. I didn’t have a voice,” she said.