The former Love Island star also said her “fath in the universe would have been so shattered” if Bear was not found guilty after Harrison, 28, reported him to the police for sharing the clip online in 2020.
The 2016 Celebrity Big Brother winner was eventually convicted on charges of voyeurism and sharing private sexual photographs and videos with intent to distress, and sentenced to 21 months in prison this March.
Harrison has waived her right to anonymity as the reality TV personality hopes to help other victims of intimate image abuse. She has written about her fight to bring Bear to justice in her new memoir Taking Back My Power.
“It went so horrifically viral; my postman’s probably seen it,” Harrison The Guardian. “It’s that feeling that I’d let myself down, let my family down, that I should have seen it coming and how could I have been so stupid?”
Despite repeated assurances he had deleted the video, recorded on CCTV cameras at Bear’s home without Harrison’s knowledge, the former roofer posted the sex tape on his verified OnlyFans account in 2020. It quickly began to circulate online, with Harrison only finding out about it after she received a screenshot in December.
In the new interview, she recalled her family’s “horrified but supportive reaction”, explaining: “I was an adult having sex – they told me I’d done nothing to be ashamed of.”
However, the ex-Towie star admitted it was hard to shake the feelings of shame, adding she didn’t realise how bad her anxiety had been “until now”.
“I wouldn’t be able to go to the gym on my own, or I’d get in and feel everyone was looking at me and have to leave,” Harrison said. “I barely left the house and when I did it was really hard not to panic. It got to the point where I only wanted to be around my closest friends.”
Harrison, who previously said at least five revenge porn victims reached out to her for advice after the Bear trial, was recently awarded the Activist award at Glamour magazine’s Women of the Year Award in London.
After Bear posted the video online, Harrison successfully campaigned for better laws around intimate image abuse, and helped reform the Online Safety Bill to make it easier to prosecute people who share revenge porn.
Accepting the trophy last Tuesday (17 October), Harrison said: “I do not want to see another generation of women feeling abused, violated and ashamed. I want them to feel empowered and loved.
“I want them to fearlessly speak their truth and I want them to live in a world where no means no, and consent is taken seriously by all other human beings.”
In an separate interview, Harrison said she has had “serious conversations” about becoming a Labour MP in Essex, when she attended the party conference in Liverpool earlier this month.
“I had serious conversations with a couple of Labour MPs about if I could run for Essex, and they said it would be possible,” Ms Harrison told The Sun, highlighting the need for “more normal people going into politics”.
If you or someone you know has been the victim of revenge porn, you can contact the National Revenge Porn Helpline by emailing email@example.com.