Meredith Baxter said ex-husband David Birney hit her.
"It was so sudden and unexpected, I couldn't tell you which hand hit me, or even how hard," Baxter wrote in her new memoir Untied, according to People. "I do recall thinking, 'I'd better not get up because he's going to hit me again.'"
Family Ties' Meredith Baxter: I'm a lesbian
The former Family Ties
star, who used Birney's surname professionally during their union, said she coped with the abuse by drinking heavily. She has been sober since 1990.
Baxter and Birney were married from 1974 to '89 after meeting on the short-lived sitcom Bridget Loves Bernie
and had three children together. She also discussed the book and her revelations on the Today
show, which noted that Birney has denied the allegation
.Family Ties' Meredith Baxter to pen memoir
The actress, 63, came out as a lesbian in 2009. Untied
hit bookstores Tuesday.