Hunky crooner Ricky Martin has opened up about the toll living in the closet took on him, and how coming out led him down the path to true happiness.
In a recent appearance on Proud Radio on Apple Music, Martin opened up about his meteoric 1999 rise to fame, and how trying to stay in the closet had a dire effect on his health.
“My music was being heard all over the world, regardless of the language,” Martin recalls. “I could high five God, but I wasn’t living to the fullest. I was sad. I was depressed. I would walk on stage to perform because that was the only way I could balance my emotion is to snap out of this heavy sadness that I was moving in.”
That sadness would eventually force Martin to walk away from stardom. “There came a moment that I said, ‘We need to stop. We need to stop the tour,’” he recalled. “I remember I was in Australia and from Australia, we were going to go to South America. And I said, ‘I can’t. I can’t do this. I need to go home. I need silence. I need to cry. I need to be angry. I need to forgive myself for allowing myself to reach this level, to get to where I’m at.’ And I took some time and I took a sabbatical.”
More than 10 years later, Martin would finally go public with his sexuality in his autobiography. “I got to the place I was fighting as I was writing my book between saying, ‘Am I gay? Am I bisexual? Am I gay? Am I bisexual?,’” he remembered. “And either is okay, just go within and do not lie to yourself. And then I said, ‘Rick, you are a very fortunate homosexual man. You are gay.’ And I wrote it and I pressed send, and then I cried like crazy. And I’ve been super happy ever since.”
Subsequent to his coming out, Martin returned to stardom with the album Música + Alma + Sexo, a Broadway role in a revival of Evita and a judgeship on The Voice Australia. He also married his boyfriend Jwan Yosef in 2018. The pair have four children together.