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In a new episode of the Hotboxin’ with Mike Tyson podcast, rapper Kevin Gates opened up about how rapping became “an escape” from the abuse he faced as a child.

During the 50-minute conversation, Gates was asked what led him to his rap career and shared that he was molested when he was a child. "It was an escape for me. I'mma say something, I never said this in no interview, no podcast or anything like that," Gates said at the 4:40-mark of the interview. "I grew up real, real violent, and real aggressive. Not because I wanted to be, but because I was molested when I was a child."

Gates explained that he had a “fear of being vulnerable” so he began practicing martial arts. “I took every kind of martial art you can take. I even boxed, I did everything. I wanted to be the toughest person on earth, but writing and making music was always an escape for me. Like, I never had the nuts to come out and say that,” he explained. “This my first time saying this today." 

In 2014, Tyson said in an interview on Opie Radio that he was “bullied … and sexually abused” by an “old man” who lived in the same neighborhood as him. Speaking with Gates, Tyson related to the rapper’s experiences.