Jacob Roloff, a former star of TLC’s “Little People, Big World,” says he was molested by one of the show’s former producers.
On Wednesday, Roloff, 23, opened up about his experiences in a lengthy Instagram statement.
"It is often much easier to think about things than it is to talk about them, and so this disclosure has been delayed, but through that delay, I have found the fortitude and words," he began. "As a child, after what I realize now was a long grooming process, I was molested by (a former) producer for 'Little People, Big World.'
"I do not expect to provide details of this encounter at any point publicly. I do hope he is never allowed around children again."
Roloff wrote that he first debated coming out with his allegations after the producer texted him in 2015.
"I choose to disclose it now as it remains a traumatic memory that needs to be exorcised of any further power over my development," he wrote.
Roloff is the youngest child of Amy and Matt Roloff, who each have dwarfism. He and his siblings, twins Zach and Jeremy, 30, and Molly, 27, appeared on the reality show. Roloff was 9 when the show premiered in 2006.
Roloff hopes that coming forward may offer insight into how he views such a serious matter.
"By revealing this, I may be more fully understood and my perspective on issues such as child sexual abuse, child exploitation, and the collateral costs of reality television may be received more clearly,” he wrote. “Although, I would have to add that this experience has not solely defined my point of view on any of these issues, nor has it defined my worldview in general."
"This may also serve as a reminder that the experience of sexual assault, in all of its iterations, can happen to anyone at anytime and is a far more prevalent reality than our current social stigma allows us to talk about," he added.
Roloff also noted that he remained quiet about the alleged molestation because he was a child and needed time to “process” everything.
"I continue my own contemplation on the voyeurism involved in the entire enterprise of reality television — a massive spectacle of drama and pain and argument and invasion, with a little joy sprinkled over, that viewers watch completely dissociated from the complex humans inside the simplistic 'characters' they see on TV," he wrote.
"Yet, there is no inherent causal connection between reality television production and childhood trauma. We are still sprinting ahead with the enterprise deaf, dumb and blind, asking for forgiveness later, instead of asking harder preliminary questions of ourselves."
"The profits were indeed sweet," Jacob continued. "The actual experience was more complicated."
Roloff also wrote that he questions how wise it is to let children appear on reality television and refused to place any blame on his family, while “all fault lies with the predator.”
"I am certain that this is a positive moment for me, and another step toward a brighter future," he concluded.
"I love you forever and always Jacob,” his mother commented. "Im proud of you. Now you don't have to feel alone and carry this around anymore."
"It goes without saying that I am incredibly proud of my husband right now,” Roloff's wife, Isabel, wrote on her Instagram stories.
TLC replied to the allegations.
“TLC was just informed about an alleged encounter that occurred years ago involving a third party connected to the production of Little People Big World,” the network said in a statement to TODAY.
“We are saddened and troubled by this very serious allegation, and TLC will work cooperatively with the authorities. Our main focus remains on supporting the Roloff family during this very difficult time.”