In her first televised interview since filing a lawsuit against Shia LaBeouf for intimate partner abuse, FKA Twigs refused to answer one of Gayle King’s questions pertaining to why she didn’t leave her abusive partner.

Twigs, born Tahliah Barnett, filed a suit in December accusing former boyfriend LaBeouf of sexual battery, assault, and infliction of emotional distress, according to a report by The New York Times. Since, the 33-year-old British singer has expressed that she hopes going public with her story will encourage others to identify the indicators of abuse in their own relationships and find the courage to leave.

During the interview, which aired yesterday on CBS This Morning, King asked, “Nobody who’s been in this position likes this question, and I often wonder is it even an appropriate question to ask. And you know the question is, Why didn’t you leave?”

“I think we just have to stop asking that question,” the singer replied. “I know that you’re asking it out of love, but I’m just gonna make a stance and say that I’m not gonna answer that question anymore because the question should really be to the abuser, ‘Why are you holding someone hostage with abuse?’ You know?”

The artist then illustrated how the question can implicitly defer the blame of abuse to the victim. “People say, ‘Oh, it can’t have been that bad because or else she would’ve left,” she told King. “It’s like, ‘No. Because it was that bad, I couldn’t leave.'”

For ELLE‘s March cover story, Barnett described her escape from LaBeouf, whom she was in a relationship with for nearly a year, as being the result of “pure luck.”

“I honestly wish I could say that I found some strength and I saw this light. I wish I could say, ‘[It is] a testament to my strong character,’ or ‘It’s the way my mother raised me,'” she said. “It’s none of that. It’s pure luck that I’m not in that situation anymore.”

In a statement to the Times after the suit went public, LaBeouf said, “I’m not in any position to tell anyone how my behavior made them feel. I have no excuses for my alcoholism or aggression, only rationalizations. I have been abusive to myself and everyone around me for years. I have a history of hurting the people closest to me. I’m ashamed of that history and am sorry to those I hurt. There is nothing else I can really say.”

If you or someone you know is suffering from intimate partner abuse, call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233). For more resources, go to

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