Tevin Campbell Confirms He's Gay, Explains Why He Didn't Come Out Earlier

45-year-old Tevin Campbell’s fans have long speculated about the “Can We Talk” hitmaker’s sexuality and during his August 17th appearance on the PEOPLE Every Day podcast, he, at last, confirmed that he identifies as a gay man.

“What makes me happiest right now is how far I’ve come in life,” the Texas-born artist shared. “You know, there are a lot of child stars that don’t make it… And the fact that I’ve embraced me,” he added.

Tevin Campbell performs in 2019 — Paras Griffin/Getty Images

Campbell first rose to fame in the late ’80s, at which time he didn’t necessarily feel safe coming out due to a lack of acceptance in the music industry and beyond. “I didn’t hide anything about me,” he explained.

“I didn’t try to act a certain way or anything. You just couldn’t be [gay] back then.”