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04/19/2017 01:03 pm ET

Katy Perry Wasn't 'Allowed To Interact With Gay People' As A Kid

The singer's parents are evangelical Christian pastors.

Katy Perry’s upbringing was vastly different from the life she leads now. 

In the May 2017 issue of Vogue, Perry opens up about her childhood, being raised by born-again Christians, and the insular life she led in her Santa Barbara, California, home.

“Education was not the first priority. My education started in my 20s, and there is so much to learn still,” she told Vogue. She wasn’t “allowed to interact with gay people” and said that, “there is some generational racism. But I came out of the womb asking questions, curious from day one, and I am really grateful for that: My curiosity has led me here. Anything I don’t understand, I will just ask questions about.”

Her pop culture barometer was off, too. Her family watched Bill O’Reilly, picketed Madonna and Marilyn Manson concerts, and didn’t celebrate Halloween.

“I still have conditioned layers dropping off of me by the day,” she said. 

Perry has been reconciling the truth about her past since she rose to fame with her 2008 hit single “I Kissed A Girl.” The 32-year-old spoke about this while accepting the National Equality Award at the Human Rights Campaign Gala last month. 

“I’m just a singer-songwriter, honestly. I speak my truths and I paint my fantasies into these little bite-size pop songs,” she said. “For instance, I kissed a girl and I liked it. Truth be told, I did more than that ... How was I going to reconcile that with a gospel-singing girl raised in youth groups that were pro-conversion camps? What I did know is that I was curious and even then I knew sexuality wasn’t as black and white as this dress.”

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