It was at the end of August that the Ecuadorian actor Roberto Manrique, known for his performances in Telemundo novels, announced to his followers, through a video, that he was homosexual and even had a seven-year relationship with another man. These statements caused havoc among his fans, but at the same time aroused a chain of messages of support from people who made him see that his preferences in privacy should not be discussed, since the most important thing was his talent and human qualities.
Two months after his release, the 42-year-old artist shares with TV and novels the reasons that led him to come clean and what fears invade his mind after the confession.
Where did you find the strength to talk about your sexual orientation? I did not have to draw strength because that was not the process. One day I woke up, without planning it, I had a meditation like every day, but on that occasion I went very deep and it revealed itself to me; I visualized that there is still a way to go in me, which is self-love, loving myself more one hundred percent. So I went out for a run and in that walk I connected with the fact that that self-love that I lacked was connected to an aspect of my life that I had protected, and it was my sexuality that was still shielded by networks and means.
What people knew about it? My family, my bosses, my colleagues, friends, producers. You could meet me at that time, and if I saw you and was with my boyfriend, I would introduce him to you.
Did Roberto Manrique come out of the closet? No! I wouldn’t use that phrase because I’ve never been in a closet. Only the press and social networks did not know, because even the closest fans knew, since some have stayed at my house with my boyfriend.
So the decision came from self-love? It’s right. For me, in this life the first thing we have to do is manage to love ourselves and then love others, be tolerant, be good people and everything that follows. I made the statement with all the honesty and tranquility in the world; Even earlier, when I thought that one day the time would have to come to speak publicly about my sexuality, I was struck by doubts about how my profession would be affected.
Were you scared in that regard? Yes, above all I was thinking about the consequences it could have on my artistic career.
Did you think the doors would close on you? Yes, and I still don’t know if that can happen.
Do you have any doubt? Yes, but I don’t care anymore, and that’s the difference. I have it in doubt, but I don’t pay attention to it. If the fact that the doors are closed to me is a consequence of my loving myself more, welcome, first it is me. I am no longer interested in whether I am going to lose followers or win, if they are not going to hire me, if they are going to pigeonhole me; that does not matter, now I love myself more.
Did maturity give you this thought? This thought, at this moment, in the way it happened, has to do with many years of inner work, it is like an accumulation of everything that I have lived previously, which brought as a fruit maturity, internal work, emotional solidity, maturity. in the relationship I have and other factors that helped me take this step.
Did your environment and your partner support you? Without exception.
Did you consult your boyfriend? Yes, and it was very nice, because he accompanied me to make the video in which I expressed my sexuality; it was very moving and emotional. Later my mother saw it, I sent it to the family chat, to a couple of friends, and I also remember that one of the first people I told her about the video was María Elisa Camargo.
You’re so in love? Can you see it in my eyes?
Have you thought about a wedding or don’t you believe in marriage? Here’s a very interesting part, because I did decide to openly express my sexuality, but I still have a private life. So, let’s say if there will be a wedding … let’s keep it a mystery.