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Legendary R&B singer Bobby Brown has often been in the limelight regarding his difficult life and career struggles. In a recent chat with People, the 53-year-old musician opened up about a traumatic secret he’s kept for many years: being molested by a priest as a young boy. 

Speaking in the exclusive interview ahead of his new A&E documentary, Biography: Bobby Brownpremiering on May 30, the Boston native described the experience as one of the reasons he resorted to using drugs and alcohol. 

“I was sent to a temporary custody by social services which was supposed to be a religious place but it wasn’t a very nice place to be for a child,” he told People. “One of the priests tried to molest me. He tried to touch my private parts … At that time, I was a young boy. I didn’t know what sexual boundaries were. I just knew I didn’t like being touched.” He added, “Some things are hard to forget.”

Before admitting that he tried to bury the memory, hoping to never relive the moment again, Brown said he fought back against the priest who inappropriately touched him and ran away from the facility. “I had tucked it down so deep into my soul that I didn’t think that I would talk about it again.” 

The Grammy winner says music helped him to cope with the tumultuous issues he dealt with growing up. Now, after 20 years free from narcotics, he says talking about his journey and sharing his story helps.

“I could see where things went wrong for me,” he said. “[Talking about it] helped me get through a lot of other things that had been bothering me, especially that.”

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