The Desperate Housewives star was talking at an event in Beverly Hills, California, to announce the Women's World Awards, which honor female achievements. She won the ceremony's World Actress Award last year.
She told reporters and former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev--who runs the awards--in between pauses to cry, "It's the choice to not remain silent. It's a choice to raise our voices in a strong way to say to perpetrators that we are not going to be silent anymore.
"Recently I had the honor, really, of being able to come forward and...help raise awareness of some violence against women.
"You'll excuse me, this is the first time I've kind of gone to this personal place for myself.
"These experiences that we have in our lives, both personally and professionally, leave us with a choice--the choice to use our experiences to enlighten and empower and change people's lives, and that is the choice that I am getting behind."
Hatcher, 41, hid the secret of her abuse at the hands of her uncle for over 30 years. She hit the headlines last month when she revealed the traumatic experience in an interview with Vanity Fair magazine.
Article Copyright World Entertainment News Network All Rights Reserved.