“Tiger King” star Carole Baskin is opening up about her sexuality.
The Big Cat Rescue founder, who rose to viral fame on Netflix’s “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness,” revealed she’s “always considered myself to be bisexual.”
“Even though I’ve never had a wife, I could just as easily have a wife as a husband,” Baskin, 59, said during an interview with Pink News. Baskin married Howard Baskin in November 2004 following the disappearance of her former husband, Don Lewis, in 1997.
Baskin said there was a time during her childhood that she questioned if she was “born into the wrong body” because she was a “tomboy.”
“I was always very male-oriented in the things I did,” she told the outlet. “I never had any mothering instincts or anything, you know, I never played with dolls. And so I always thought that there was something off there, that I couldn’t quite put my finger on.”
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Baskin said she realized she had “equal feelings for women as I did for men” in the ’80s when she started spending time with the LGBTQ community by way of her then-fiancé, a psychologist, during the AIDS crisis.
“As far as the way I feel about us, I think we are all one and I just don’t see us as being different genders or different colors or anything,” Baskin said.
Baskin’s love life has been a topic of conversation since the viral Netflix series explored the mysterious disappearance of her former husband in 1997.
Lewis’s disappearance remains an open case. In March, Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister announced that his office was seeking new leads following the popularity of Netflix’s “Tiger King.”
The documentary is about Joseph Maldonado-Passage, also known as “Joe Exotic,” a former Oklahoma zookeeper. He was convicted of trying to hire someone to kill Baskin, who had tried to shut him down, accusing the Oklahoma zoo of abusing animals and selling big cat cubs. He’s currently serving a 22-year prison sentence.
In retaliation, Maldonado-Passage raised questions about Lewis’ disappearance. The documentary extensively covered Maldonado-Passage’s repeated accusations that Baskin killed her husband and possibly fed him to her tigers. Baskin has never been charged with any crime and released a statement refuting the accusations made in the series.
Baskin parlayed her newfound fame into a short stint on the current season of “Dancing With The Stars.”