Monica Lewinsky breaks her silence
(CNN) — Her name became synonymous with 'sex scandal' in the 1990s.
And that's a big part of the reason Monica Lewinsky says she is speaking out now.
After keeping a low profile for more than a decade, Lewinsky is writing for the first time about her relationship with president bill Clinton.
In an article for Vanity Fair, she says it's time to stop tiptoeing around her past in order to give it a purpose.
From the arms of the president, to the pages of vanity fair magazine
It's been a long road for Monica Lewinsky, but she's found her voice, and has plenty to say!
In her tell-all essay for the magazine, she writes: "It's time to burn the beret and bury the blue dress."
The world's most famous intern is opening up to vanity fair about her affair with president Clinton, the scandal it created in 1998, and what she calls the "global humiliation."
Now 40, she is "determined to have a different ending to [her] story," and hoping to "give a purpose to [her] past."
Lewinsky says she was inspired to speak out by Tyler Clemente, the Rutgers University student who jumped to his death in 2010. He was humiliated after being caught on a webcam kissing another man in his dorm room. Lewinsky tells Vanity Fair his story brought her to tears, that after her affair she had "strong suicidal temptations" too. She's hoping to "help others in their darkest moments.
In her essay, Lewinsky dishes on the affair and the ugly aftermath: "I myself deeply regret what happened between me and president Clinton," adding, "It was a consensual relationship," and that she was "made a scapegoat in order to protect his powerful position."
At the time, the president tried to protect himself too:
"I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss. Lewinsky."
But seven months later, President Clinton spoke to the American people again. This time with a different story:
"Indeed, I did have a relationship with Miss Lewinsky that was not appropriate. In fact, it was wrong."
Monica Lewinsky spoke with ABC’s Barbara Walters about it:
"I felt like a piece of trash. I felt dirty and I felt used. And I was disappointed."
We haven't heard much from Lewinsky since then.
This interview with Larry King on CNN in 2002 was one of her last:
King: "Was there a little, like, you know, flirtatious thing going on?"
Lewinsky: "Sure. There had been this flirtation. And that really was where it began. And that's where it started. And from there, it sort of..."
King: "Took off."
Lewinsky: "That's -- the match lit."
Silent for more than a decade, she's quick to note in her essay that the Clintons did not pay her off to keep quiet.
Though she's done little professionally over the years besides promote her own handbag line, it wasn't for lack of trying.
In fact, she can't even get a job.
After getting her master's degree at the London school of economics, she told the magazine, "because of what potential employers so tactfully referred to as my 'history, I was never 'quite right' for the position."