Ginuwine is getting real about mental health and rumors that he’s transphobic.
The singer, who stars on Bravo’s latest reality show Your Husband Is Cheating On Us, spoke to The Grio about battling depression, suicidal thoughts, and rumors of transphobia.
Ginuwine, who appeared on the UK’s Celebrity Big Brother, told the website that he “didn’t understand” rumors that spread accusing him of transphobia. The rumors were sparked after the singer refused to let transgender roommate India Willoughby kiss him on the reality series. Adding, that he wouldn’t date her if she told him she was trans.
“We didn’t have TV or radio or phones or anything so I didn’t know what was going on until we got out of the house. Once I got my phone I saw all the messages and was like, ‘What?’ I didn’t even think it was a big deal when I did it. It shouldn’t have been,” he said.
The singer continued, “Anyone should have the right to say no if they don’t want someone to kiss them or touch them or date them or anything. That doesn’t make me transphobic. Anyone who knows me knows that’s not true. That’s totally not me as far as being transphobic or homophobic. To me, that’s just stupid to even think that.”
Ginuwine also shared his battle with suicidal thoughts and depression, which began after he lost both of his parents within a year of each other. His mother lost her battle to cancer in 2000, a year after his father committed suicide by shooting himself in the head.
“My dad committed suicide so that’s close to my heart to fight against. Anytime someone is speaking that way, we shouldn’t take it lightly because you never know what’s on a person’s heart or in a person’s mind. We have to pay attention,” he said. “When you don’t talk and hold so much hurt inside, you start thinking ‘Maybe I shouldn’t be here.’ Look at these people going into schools and shooting people and killing themselves. Its ridiculous. We have to take it seriously.”
The singer went on to urge people to take control of their mental health by talking to people they trust. “The first thing you have to do is always find somebody you can talk to. I found my church home that way by talking to ministers and friends. I never really went to church and that was a different place for me and I felt the love there. Whenever I felt that way, they were around to talk to me.”
“A lot of times, men like to keep stuff in and that’s the worst thing that you can do. I always tell younger guys that the best thing to do is to talk about it and I try to be open for people to talk to because once you’re gone, you’re gone. There’s no coming back from that.”