Pop singer Ricky Martin said he still suffers from PTSD from a 20-year-old interview he did with Barbara Walters in which she inquired about his sexuality.
Speaking to People to commemorate the month of June, what some people refer to as “Pride Month,” the “Livin’ La Vida Loca” singer said he gets a fit of anxiety when he reflects upon the interview with Barbara Walters. Though Ricky Martin openly declared his sexuality in 2010, rumors swirled prior to his coming out.
“You could stop these rumors,” Walters said at the time. “You could say, ‘Yes I am gay or no I’m not.'”
Martin responded, “I just don’t feel like it.”
According to Martin, he was still questioning his sexual orientation and did not want it to become a public spectacle. He told People that he felt “violated” at the time.
“When she dropped the question, I felt violated because I was just not ready to come out. I was very afraid,” he said, getting very shaken up thinking about the moment 11 years later. “There’s a little PTSD with that.”
Martin did, however, admit that he would approach the interview differently if he were to go back in time, based on what he knows now about himself.
“A lot of people say, what would you do differently?” he told People. “Well, maybe I would have come out in that interview. It would’ve been great because when I came out, it just felt amazing. When it comes to my sexuality, when it comes to who I am, I want to talk about what I’m made of, about everything that I am. Because if you hide it, it’s a life-or-death situation.”
Martin expressed even more regret that he did not help youth struggling with their sexuality much sooner.
“There are many, many kids out there that don’t have someone to look up to. All they have around them is people telling them, ‘What you’re feeling is evil,'” he said. “But, you can’t force someone to come out. 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.”
As noted by Fox News, Walters did eventually acknowledge the question was “inappropriate” after Martin came out in 2010.
“In 2000, I pushed Ricky Martin very hard to admit if he was gay or not, and the way he refused to do it made everyone decide that he was,” she told the Toronto Star. “A lot of people say that destroyed his career, and when I think back on it now I feel it was an inappropriate question.”
Ricky Martin proudly endorsed Joe Biden for president and even expressed dismay that President Trump garnered so much Latino support.
“I’ve been supporting Biden forever,” he said on the Variety iHeart podcast “The Big Ticket.” “I think he is the only option we have and he is great and he has been in politics all his life. This is the moment. We all need to get together and be loud about the course of this nation.”
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