Halloween icon Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, played by Cassandra Peterson has come out, revealing her 19-year relationship with a woman.
Peterson, 70, released her new memoir Yours Cruelly, Elvira yesterday (September 21) and shared the story of her and her partner, Teresa “T” Wierson.
Per Advocate, Peterson saw Wierson at the Hollywood Gold’s Gym, writing in the book, “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. Dark and brooding, he gave off such intense energy that when he crossed the enormous gym floor, the waters parted and people stopped in their tracks to stare.”
It wasn’t until they had a chance encounter in the ladies room that she realized her toned, tanned and handsome trainer was really a woman and the two soon became close, as friends. The friendship became romantic following the end of Peterson’s 25-year marriage to her manager Mark Pierson. As Peterson tells it in her book, the path to a more serious connection began with Wierson arriving at her home one rainy night, also freshly out of a relationship.
“There on the doorstep stood my trainer, T, holding a trash bag full of her belongings, looking sad and bedraggled. She’d split from her longtime partner, spent some time in rehab, and now had no place to go.”
The two lived together and took care of one another through their heartbreaks. One night, after they were out at a movie, Peterson felt a sudden desire to kiss Wierson. “I think I was even more surprised. What the hell was I doing? I’d never been interested in women as anything other than friends. I felt so confused. This just wasn’t me! I was stunned that I’d been friends with her for so many years and never noticed our chemistry,” she writes. “I soon discovered that we connected sexually in a way I’d never experienced.”
19 years later, and the two are still going strong. Wierson became Peterson’s assistant, so they kept their relationship under wraps as to protect the Elvira brand.
“Would my fans hate me for not being what they expected me to be?” she shares in the book, “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.”
Regardless of her doubt, she writes that she’s never been happier. “For the first time in my life, I’m with someone who makes me feel safe, blessed, and truly loved.”