Oprah is breaking her silence about something she rarely talks about.
"My sister sold me out to the tabloids," said Oprah.
It happened in 1990. Oprah's sister Pat was battling hardcore drug addiction.
"My sister Pat, I did the best I could for her. I had to put her through drug rehab twice," recalls Oprah.
But instead of thanking Oprah, Pat went to The National Enquirer and revealed that Oprah had given birth to a baby when she was just 14-years-old. The baby died after two weeks. The headline read, "Her Sister Reveals the Shocking Truth at Last." Pat was paid $19,000 for the interview.
When Oprah found out, she said that she "took to my bed and cried for three days. I felt devastated. Wounded. Betrayed. How could this person do this to me?" (Source: O Magazine, February 2007)
Pat died from an oxycontin overdose in 2003, never having made peace with Oprah.
Author Kitty Kelley wrote the recent unauthorized biography of Oprah, and says, "She was furious at her sister Pat."
But like a good aunt, Oprah has stayed close with Pat's two daughters. Alisha owns a barbeque restaurant in Milwaukee named after her mom. Chrishaunda is a TV personality.
Oprah thanked her long lost sister for not selling her out like Pat did, saying on her talk show, "Since I have been a person known in the public, there have been few times that I have been anywhere and not been sold out. What is so extraordinary about Patricia, she never once thought to sell this story."
But Oprah says that Pat's betrayal did lead her to make peace with her painful past, saying on her talk show, "My sister Pat going to the tabloids and telling the story about my having the baby, was a gift because it released me from the shame."