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Last week, Ricky Martin proudly announced that he had secretly married his long-term boyfriend, Jwan Yosef, earlier this month, however, the singer did not expect to ever be able to publicly mark such a huge milestone in his life.
In fact, the 46-year-old star has confessed that he was “warned” that his career would “end” if he came out as gay – and that he had grown up being told that his feelings towards other men were “evil”.
Speaking to chat show host Trevor Noah, Ricky explained: “I was surrounded by friends that were telling me, ‘Don’t! Don’t come out that will be the end of your career.’ It was people that love me, people that mean well and people that were just victims of homophobia.
“I grew up in this culture that told me that my feelings were horrible, that my feelings were evil.
“And if you add to that, you know, that I was like a heartthrob, like a sex symbol. Everyone was telling me that it was going to be the end of my career.”
However, keeping quiet wasn’t easy for Ricky and he admitted that he found hiding who he really was “extremely painful”.
In the end, it was the birth of Ricky’s twin sons, Matteo and Valentino, in 2008 that forced the star to speak out – with Ricky welcoming the twins via surrogate.
He shared: “I had my kids and then I said, ‘I have to come out, I’m not going to lie to these beautiful kids.’ To lie? No, that’s not the point.
“And you know, life works in cycles, it’s very interesting. Look at what I’m doing today, I’m talking on behalf of people that continue to hurt and through acting.”
Ricky and his now-husband, Jwan, first started dating in 2016, getting engaged in November of that year after Ricky proposed.
The pair are currently based in London and raise Ricky’s nine-year-old twins together.