Cassandra Peterson, otherwise known as Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, has come out in her new memoir, Yours Cruelly, Elvira.
Released on Tuesday, the memoir details many aspects of the Queen of Halloween’s life, including the revelation of her 19-year relationship with another woman, Teresa “T” Wierson.
According to The Advocate, Peterson’s relationship with Wierson, who is a personal trainer, began at Hollywood’s Gold Gym. “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,” she writes in the book. “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.”
As it turns out, the brooding trainer was Wierson, as Peterson discovered when the two met in the ladies room. After Peterson’s 25-year marriage to Mark Pierson ended, she and Wierson began a friendship that flourished into something more.
“I’d never been interested in women as anything other than friends. I felt so confused,” Peterson wrote of the beginning stages of her romantic relationship with Wierson. “This just wasn’t me! I was stunned that I’d been friends with her for so many years and never noticed our chemistry. I soon discovered that we connected sexually in a way I’d never experienced.”
The pair have now been together for more than 19 years; they kept their relationship quiet, The Advocate writes, because they wanted to protect the Elvira brand. “Would my fans hate me for not being what they expected me to be?” Peterson writes in the book, adding, “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.”
For her part, Peterson 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.”
The internet naturally exploded in joy at the news.