These days Ricky Martin is happily raising four children with his husband, Jwan Yosef, but he said getting to this moment in his life was a long journey of self-discovery.
“Am I gay? Am I bisexual? Am I confused? What am I?” Martin, 49, reflected on his past thoughts in a new interview with People for the magazine’s second annual Pride issue.
“Sexuality is one complicated thing. It’s not black and white. It’s filled with colors,” the “Livin’ La Vida Loca” singer continued. “When I was dating women, I was in love with women. It felt right, it felt beautiful. You can’t fake chemistry — the chemistry was there with them. I wasn’t misleading anyone.”
Martin dated “lots of women,” including model and TV presenter Rebecca de Alba, even while the press speculated about his sexuality, he said. He would date men in private, too. In 2000, when he was 29, he was asked by Barbara Walters on national television if he was gay.
“You could stop these rumors,” Walters told him at the time. “You could say, ‘Yes I am gay or no I’m not.'” Martin answered Walters with, “I just don’t feel like it.”
Recalling that moment, Martin said he “felt violated” because he “was just not ready to come out.”
“I was very afraid,” he added. “There’s a little PTSD with that.”
Walters has since expressed regret for pushing Martin to answer her question. In 2010 she told the Toronto Star she felt it was “an inappropriate question.”
Martin officially came out via a statement on his website in 2010, stating: “I am proud to say that I am a fortunate homosexual man. I am very blessed to be who I am.”
The two-time Grammy winner added that “these years in silence and reflection made me stronger and reminded me that acceptance has to come from within and that this kind of truth gives me the power to conquer emotions I didn’t even know existed.”
Martin said, “it just felt amazing” when he eventually share with the world that he was gay, but he knows everyone does so in their own time and when they feel comfortable.
“You can’t force someone to come out,” he said. “But if you have an egg and you open it from the outside, only death comes out. But if the egg opens up from the inside, life comes out.”
Ricky’s new album, “Play,” is coming soon, with the first single dropping June 10. This fall, he’ll tour with Enrique Iglesias.
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