BOXING legend Oscar De La Hoya has claimed he was raped by an 'older woman' at the age of 13.
The Golden Boy will return to the ring a week on Saturday against former UFC light-heavyweight champion Vitor Belfort in Los Angeles.
Ahead of his return, six-weight world champion De La Hoya has opened up on his with his battle with substance abuse following his retirement.
And in a frank interview with the Los Angeles Times, he shared a traumatic childhood experience.
He said: "I was raped at 13, from a woman, an older woman.
"Thirteen, lost my virginity over being, you know, being raped, basically.
“I was in Hawaii, I think, at some tournament. She was over 35."
De La Hoya, 48, pushed the horrendous ordeal to the back of his mind as he embarked on what would become a hall-of-fame career.
But he never took the time to mentally process the alleged sexual assault.
The Olympic gold medallist added: “You suppress everything.
"You’re living this life, the Golden Boy, but, oh s**t, wait, that’s still there.
"Like I never, like, thought about it, I never processed it, I never really thought how my feelings are… until one day it just comes out, and you don’t know how to deal with it.”
De La Hoya opted to make a change to his life last year after years of wrestling with drug and alcohol addiction.
He said: “I couldn’t be drinking and doing drugs and this and that. I’m going to throw my life away, you know?”
I was raped at 13, from a woman, an older woman.
De La Hoya hasn't set foot inside the ring since being dismantled by Manny Pacquiao in their Las Vegas showdown in 2009.
Five months later, he brought the curtain down on his legendary career – a decision he still regrets to this day.
He said: "The next day, deep down inside, it's like, why did I do that?
"You try to convince yourself that life is going to get better after you retire.
"Jesus, you've been waiting for this moment all your life.
"And once you're retired, once you're not doing what you love, there's a big hole."
Lacing up the gloves again is something De La Hoya is relishing after 12 years of inactivity.
And he's anticipating his clash with Belfort to be an all-out war.
The Olympian said: “This fight is f*****g crazy important. It's what makes or breaks me.
"If I have Belfort right in front of me, I'll tell him thank you for the opportunity and I know we are going to f——- beat the s**t out of each other. It's basically it.
"It's going to be fun. Don't forget that. I love fighting. Belfort is a freaking legend.
"The fact that he's a big guy is a big challenge. It's what gets me going. Let's go!
“Everybody who knows me knows that when I fight, I give it my all. When I train, I train like a mad man.
"I was tired of all these exhibitions. When you're up there, you're up there to go to war.
"That's what I expect to do. I know he's a big motherf****r I'll tell you one thing, I'm doing this for the right reasons. Mentally and physically, it's the old time.
"I'm in the zone right now. I know we are going to get into a f*****g war.
"It's fine. It's good. I love that. That's my life. But I can't wait. I respect him. I love him."
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