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While younger generations may know Ricky Martin as a popstar who has always been openly gay, older fans know that was not always the case. For years, Ricky Martin didn’t talk about his sexuality out of anxiety and fear. But that didn’t stop him from facing invasive questions from the media.

This year, Ricky Martin is on the cover of People magazine’s Pride Issue. The Puerto Rican singer says that he has a bit of “PTSD” from his infamous interview with Barbara Walters.

In 2000, the then-29-year-old Ricky Martin sat down for an in-depth interview with Barbara Walters. Instead of leaving his personal life alone, the veteran reporter grilled Ricky Martin about his sexuality.

“You could stop these rumors,” Walters said. “You could say, ‘Yes I am gay or no I’m not.'” Even at the time, audiences could see that Ricky Martin was uncomfortable. He told Barbara Walters: “I just don’t feel like it.”

“When she dropped the question, I felt violated because I was just not ready to come out,” Martin said. “I was very afraid. There’s a little PTSD with that.”

Since coming out in 2010, Ricky Martin is an active member of the LGBTQ community. He now talks about how freeing it is to live his authentic life so publicly.

“A lot of people say, what would you do differently?” he said. “Well, maybe I would have come out in that interview. It would’ve been great because when I came out, it just felt amazing…Because if you hide it, it’s a life-or-death situation.”

In the interview, Martin talked about how important it is to let LGBTQ people come out on their own timeline. “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.”

Ricky Martin also talked about how, before he came out, he wasn’t necessarily sure about how he would label his sexuality.

In his interview with People, Martin talked about how he dated “lots of women” before realizing he was gay. “You don’t have to be a gay man to know that love is complicated,” he said. “Or to know how confusing attraction can be.” Before he came out, he would ask himself: “Am I gay? Am I bisexual?…What am I?'”

“Sexuality is one complicated thing,” he said. “It’s not black and white. It’s filled with colors. When I was dating women, I was in love with women. It felt right, it felt beautiful. You can’t fake chemistry —the chemistry was there with them. I wasn’t misleading anyone.”