Ricky Martin: I want my kids to look at their daddies and be proud

Ricky Martin has said filming American Crime Story was like re-living the homophobia he lived through before coming out as gay.

The iconic Latino star, who is now married with two children, admitted he “played every role” long before appearing in the Versace tale.

Speaking to gay magazine Attitude he said: “I was a closeted gay man who was making my partners hide.

“I had relationships with other men who were in the closet and I had other relationships with men who were not in the closet but because of me went back into the closet.

“And so I’m re-living everything that I did.”

The 46-year-old puts his long stretch in the closet down to an obsession with work – blocking out any opportunities to explore his own sexuality.

“I submitted myself to my career completely. I didn’t open doors to new relationships, and I’m not talking about romantic relationships, I’m talking about any relationship, because I didn’t want people to know me too much.

“I wouldn’t even sit down and have a cool relationship with amazing producers or great film directors because I was afraid that if they spent more than two hours sitting with me they would know my nature.

“I wasted so much energy trying to manipulate my sexuality,” he confessed.

Despite avoiding any public recognition of being gay for many years, the singer and his Swedish / Syrian husband, Jwan Josef, have come to be among the most visible LGBT celebrity couples.

“We love it! It’s not even for us; it’s for our kids,” Rick said of his high profile as a gay man.

“It’s for my kids to look at us on that red carpet and say, ‘Ah, those are my daddies, how cool!’

“And to boost my children with self-esteem and let them understand how amazing it is to be part of a modern family… We know that we carry this flag and if we’re going to carry this flag, let’s sway this flag really loudly.

“Because at the end of the day, we’re proud of who we are… Just being visible is a lot of help.

“That’s my activism. Every time I post a picture of me and my husband on Instagram, that’s my activism. And we’ll keep fighting.”

The April issue of Attitude magazine is out now.