Ricky Martin admits he bullied gay people as a child.
The 41-year-old Grammy-winner, who came out as a gay man in 2010, struggled for years to accept his sexuality and refused to acknowledge it in several interviews.
In a candid sit-down with GQ Australia, the Puerto Rican star now remembers the painful experience of acting against his own impulses, revealing how growing up Roman Catholic filled him with shame.
“I was very angry, very rebellious. I used to look at gay men and think, I’m not like that, I don’t want to be like that, that’s not me. I was ashamed,” the singer explained.
“When you’re told you’re wrong by everyone, from society, from your faith – my self-esteem was crushed. I took my anger out on those around me.”
The singer reached a point decades later when he decided he no longer wanted to hide and only then opened his eyes to the depth of self-hatred he had been holding in.
“I look back now and realize I would bully people who I knew were gay,” he said. “I had internalized homophobia. To realize that was confronting to me. I wanted to get away from that.”
Ricky became a father in 2008 to twin boys, Matteo and Valentino, born by a surrogate mother.
He has made public that he is in a committed relationship with stock broker Carlos González Abella.
Ricky covers GQ Australia’s September/October issue.
The magazine has dubbed the She Bangs crooner a “role model for the entire planet”.
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