Common Opens Up About Being Molested ... I Want to Help Others Like Me

5/7/2019 11:40 AM PDT

Common Hopes His New Book Helps Other Molestation Victims Heal

EXCLUSIVE

Common's on a newfound mission to help victims of molestation -- like himself -- and says his just-released book is the first step in making it happen.

The multitalented star was leaving NBC in New York Tuesday when we asked about his new memoir, 'Let Love Have the Last Word,' and its shocking revelation that he was molested as a child.

Common tells us he's being open about his experience because he hopes it will encourage others to feel safe talking about it too ... and it will aid in the healing process.

In his book, the Oscar-winner shares how a repressed memory of being molested by a family friend -- whom he refers to as Brandon -- surfaced a couple years ago while acting out a scene with Laura Dern in the 2018 film, "The Tale."

Common's story details his personal journey as he works through the painful experience with the help of therapy ... and how he's still dealing with it on a daily basis.

As he tells us ... he's trying to help the people as he helps himself.