*Actress Cassandra Peterson, famously known as Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, released a memoir on Tuesday in which she reveals she’s been in a relationship for 19 years with a woman.
Peterson writes in “Yours Cruelly, Elvira: Memoirs of the Mistress of the Dark” that she first met Teresa “T” Wierson while working out at Gold’s Gym in Hollywood. She initially thought Wierson was a mald.
“Often, when I was doing my preworkout warm-up on the treadmill, I couldn’t help noticing one particular trainer — tan, tattooed, and muscular — stalking across the gym floor, knit cap pulled so low over his long brown hair that it nearly covered his eyes,” she explains via People magazine.
“A typical sexy bad boy, he was unaware he was so charismatic that he’d garnered his own unofficial fan club. Watching him from the safety of my treadmill made my heart beat faster and the time pass much more quickly,” she adds in the book.
But after a run-in in the ladies room, Peterson realized Wierson was a woman, who she describes as an “incredibly sweet person, despite her tough exterior.”
Peterson admits she was reluctant to go public with her same-sex relationship at the height of her career in Hollywood. She spent four decades building her iconic Elvira persona.
“As Cassandra, it wouldn’t have mattered to me that people knew about our relationship, but I felt the need to protect Elvira in order to keep my career alive. Elvira has always had a thing for men, and men have a thing for her, so I worried that if I announced I was no longer living the ‘straight life,’ my fans would feel lied to, call me a hypocrite, and abandon me,” she says via the outlet.
“Would my fans hate me for not being what they expected me to be? I’m very aware that there will be some who will be disappointed and maybe even angry, but I have to live with myself, and at this point in my life, I’ve got to be truthful about who I am.”
Elsewhere in the memoir, she recalls some of her encounters with male celebrities, such as late basketball star Wilt Chamberlain. The NBA icon revealed in his 1991 memoir “A View From Above” that he slept with 20,000 women. Peterson claims he forced oral sex on her.
“When a 7-foot-1, 300-pound man has his hand wrapped around your neck, there’s really not a lot you can do,” she writes of the athlete.“I had to wonder how many of those women actually consented to having sex with him,” writes Peterson.