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Lili Estefan, Gloria Estefan and her daughter Emily Estefan on Red Table Talks.
Lili Estefan, Gloria Estefan and her daughter Emily Estefan on Red Table Talks. Graphic: Facebook

Gloria Estefan reveals sexual abuse by a family member

Cuban singer Gloria Estefan said that at the age of nine she was sexually abused by a close relative.

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Gloria Estefan and her family had a difficult conversation during a Thursday, Sept. 30 appearance on Red Table Talk.

The Cuban singer opened the show's season by revealing that at age nine, she was sexually abused by a relative her mother trusted. Along with her niece Lili Estefan and daughter Emily Estefan, the first episode of Red Table Talk: The Estefans, was the first time she spoke publicly about the traumatic episode in her life. 

"He was in a powerful position, because my mom put me in her music school and he immediately started telling her that I was very talented and that I needed special attention. He terrified me. And I knew he was crazy because at no time did I think this was happening because of me. I knew he was wrong and that's why I believed him when he told me he would hurt my mother," Estefan said.

With the conversation, Estefan put on the table not only the issue of abuse, but also the fear of speaking out, remembering that "these things were not talked about in her time." 

On the other hand, she denounced the little support she had when she tried to denounce the situation and the disinterest and minimization of the situation by the authorities. 

"And then the police came and told my mom not to press charges because the trauma of putting me on a stand (in court), it was going to be worse for me. And I still feel horrible about that, imagining that there could have been more victims."

The three-time Grammy Award-winning artist also recalled that her abuser, "was a very respected member of the (music) community." It is not news that in the industry there are men who abuse their position of power.

"I wanted to confront and touch on this issue because by talking about it we can help prevent it," the singer said.

The show Red Table Talks: The Estefans is in its second season and airs on Facebook Watch.

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