Ricky Martin made his return to television on Wednesday evening playing his first gay character (Antonio D’Amico) in The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story. During an appearance on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah on Tuesday, January 17, the 46-year-old admitted that coming out as gay himself in 2010 was “extremely painful.”
“I was surrounded by friends that were telling me ‘Don’t! Don’t come out, that will be the end of your career!'” he shared. “People that love me, people that mean well, people that were just victims of homophobia.”
Ricky, who was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, admitted that he grew up in a culture that told him his feelings “were evil.” “If you add to that the fact that I was like a heartthrob, like a sex symbol,” he explained. “But everyone was telling me 'It's going to be the end of your career.'”
Ricky added, “It was extremely painful for me until I said, ‘I can't take it anymore. It's all about me now. It's not about what's happening outside. It's about what I need in order for me to be happy.’”
The Puerto Rican singer noted that his twin sons — Matteo and Valentino — gave him the strength he needed to come out. The Versace star said, “Then I had my kids and then I said, ‘I have to come out.' I mean, I'm not going to lie to these beautiful kids. To lie? No, that's not the point. And life works in cycles. It's very interesting. Look at what I'm doing today, I'm talking still on behalf of people that are being hurt through acting."
Earlier this month, the dad-of-two, who recently married artist Jwan Yosef, opened up to Out Magazine about wanting to “normalize” non-traditional families. He said, “I want people to look at me and see a family and say, ‘There’s nothing wrong with that.’ It's part of my mission. It’s part of my kids’ mission as well. My kids ask me about having two daddies and I tell them we are a part of a modern family. This is a beautiful sense of freedom.”