So on May 1, 1987, at Gary's invitation, I agreed to see him one last time - to confront him face-to-face about his sincerity and with the intention of ending our brief relationship.
Since it was too difficult to get into the Screen Actor's Guild in New York, I moved to Miami in 1982 and started a successful career as a television commercial actress, obtaining my SAG card there.
Pornography changes the attitudes and lifestyles of those who consume it, no matter how old a person is.
Over the next few years, as I worked through my depression and the shock related to the scandal, I still struggled with relationships.
My family didn't like my being in New York without a steady job and encouraged me to come home, but that was the last thing I wanted to do.
It was hard to turn down the money since I didn't have a job, but I didn't want to exploit my notoriety because I knew the way I'd been living was wrong.
In my case, I learned that although God loves us, he doesn't grant us immunity from the consequences of our choices.
I've had to recover not only from a single well-publicized incident, but several years of press aftermath.
I'd gone through a lot of guys in the past year, trying to get over my old boyfriend, but Gary was the one who swept me off my feet.
I was always an overachiever.
I stared at the television in shock, watching as my private life was revealed to the world.
I had gained so much confidence through my college achievements that I wanted to tackle the world.
I couldn't go to South Carolina because the media had staked out my parents' house, so they encouraged me through long-distance phone calls.
But even after the first week, when Hart got out of the presidential race because of the Washington Post's threat to reveal a long-term relationship Hart had apparently been having with a prominent Washington woman, the media continued to embellish my past.
But during that same year, the two Christian guys I'd dated since high school youth group graduated from college and drifted out of my life.
Before the group left, Gary asked for my phone number, and the next day he called to ask me to dinner that night. I had no idea he was married, but I found out that night.
Before the boat docked, however, he confessed because he was contemplating running for president, he couldn't separate from his wife. I believed him when he told me he faced a difficult choice between pursuing personal happiness and his political destiny.
Because pornography is a tool of Satan that exploits and distorts our God-given sexuality, women - especially Christian women - need to understand the increasing threat of online pornography.
At thirteen I began modeling, doing my first television commercial in ninth grade for Pizza Hut.
At an awkward time in junior high, when I got braces, my mom encouraged me to take a modeling class so I'd learn to walk properly and wear makeup.
Although I'd first seen Senator Hart in Aspen, Colorado, at a New Year's Day party in 1987, we hadn't talked.
After graduating in the summer of 1980, I knew I wanted my life to count.
A month after the scandal broke, I tried to go back to work at the pharmaceutical company after a leave of absence. But because of all the publicity and resulting pressure and stress, I finally resigned.
Returning to South Carolina meant getting a normal job in a normal town with normal people and marrying a normal person. I wanted the glamour and opportunity of the world.
I'm stronger knowing that while Donna Rice could be sold, she could not be bought.