Madonna’s childhood was anything but picture-perfect. After losing her mother at a young age, she went on to live with her father Silvio, and his then-wife. In an interview with Rolling Stone, the artist opened up about her troubled relationship with her former stepmom. “My stepmother slapped me a lot, and she gave me a bloody nose once. I was thrilled about it because my nose bled all over an outfit that she made me for Easter. I really hated it, and I didn’t want to wear it to church,” she admitted, adding, “…Not only did I not have to wear the dress, but I didn’t have to go to church.”
Madonna also admitted that her stepmother forbid her from using tampons, forcing her to go to a friend for advice. “That’s why my friend Moira had to teach me how to wear a tampon. I’m telling you, I put it in sideways and was walking around paralyzed one day. It pinched a nerve or something,” she revealed. The singer’s controlling relationship with her mother figure at the time led her to rebel, and she even admitted to having sex for the first time at just 14 years old.
Madonna’s sheltered upbringing was a far cry from the liberated pop vixen she became known to be. Her self-discovery could be due to a rigid childhood where sex was hardly discussed. “I’ve never really talked about sex with my father. My parents were virgins when they got married. My mother was very religious, too,” the artist said.