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Gloria Estefan has revealed she was sexually abused by a relative when she was nine years old.
The Cuban-American singer spoke publicly about the abuse for the first time during an episode of her Facebook Watch show Red Table Talk: The Estefans, which aired on Thursday.
She began by telling her daughter Emily and niece Lili that "93 per cent of abused children know and trust their abusers, and I know this, because I was one of them," and went on to share her story, revealing that the man was a "respected member of the community".
"I was nine years old when this happened and this was somebody that my mother trusted. He was family, but not close family," she shared. "He was in a position of power because my mother had put me in his music school and he immediately started telling her how talented I was and how I needed special attention, and she felt lucky that he was focusing this kind of attention on me.
"It starts little by little and then it goes fast. I knew that this was a dangerous situation and when I revolted and told him this cannot happen and you cannot do this, he said your father is in Vietnam, your mother is alone. I will kill her if you tell her."
The 64-year-old insisted that she never blamed herself for the man's behaviour because she thought that he was crazy and genuinely believed he might harm her mother. Estefan kept pretending she was sick to avoid going to school and her hair started falling out due to the stress and anxiety she was under.
The Conga singer eventually told her mother and she called the police, but she was advised against pressing charges, with officers explaining that Estefan would go through "worse trauma having to get on a stand".
"That's the one thing I feel bad about, knowing that there must've been other victims," she admitted.