Zac Efron’s Ex-Girlfriend Claims He ‘Manipulated’ & ‘Brainwashed’ Her While They Were Dating

Zac Efron
Photo: Brent N. Clarke/Invision/AP.

Not long after his split from Australian model Vanessa Valladares, Zac Efron’s ex Sarah Bro is speaking out about her past “traumatic” relationship with a Hollywood star. Although she didn’t refer to the star by name, all signs seem to point to Zac being the man in question.

Zac, 33, and Sarah, 25, were rumored to be dating in 2019 but eventually called it quits after less than a year together. The Danish former Olympic swimmer seemingly alluded to the Greatest Showman actor during the Wednesday, May 5, episode of her podcast “Hjerteflimmer for voksne,” where she spoke to co-host and psychologist, Jytte Vikkelsø, about the “baggage” she still carries from her last relationship.

“I was dating a movie star over in the US. Something I have never talked about before to the media, because I have not seen any reason for it,” Sarah said during the episode, according to a report by Danish site SE og HØR which was later translated into English. “But when we sit here in this setting, I can also feel that it is difficult to talk about love, without also talking about the one thing that has made me truly believe in my heart that I should not have a boyfriend again.”

The pro-athlete went on to recall her toxic relationship with the star. “I had been so manipulated and almost brainwashed,” she explained. “But also because I was young, confused, and in love, and that I chose to turn a blind eye on purpose.” According to Sarah, her ex-boyfriend would tell her that she was “so annoying” because of how “happy” she was—and eventually, she started “believing in it.”

“If he then said to me one day that I looked nice, then I could live on that for weeks—
as if we had just gotten married almost. It was completely ecstatic,” she continued. But the Denmark-native soon recognized how much this co-dependent relationship was changing her. “It was really hard [being] with someone where I compromised so much with my own boundaries,” she said. “Eventually, I got so far away from who I really was that I couldn’t recognize myself.”

Following their split in 2019, Sarah remembers having to pull herself back up and rebuild her identity. “It was not just my heart that was broken,” she told her co-hosts. “It was my whole personality that was split in half.”

Sarah’s comments come just weeks after reports Zac broke up with Vanessa Valladares. The 25-year-old model reportedly met Zac at a cafe in Australia where she worked as a waitress. The pair went on to date for 10 months before calling it quits in April 2021.

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