I hear from gay athletes all the time. This site is kind of a venting place for gay boys/men who enjoy athletics, but don’t like the homophobia that prevails in their chosen sports.
It’s been a while since I heard from a wrestler, but yesterday a boy named Sean wrote me. He lives in Vermont, is a high school senior, and is not out to his teammates and coach. He’s an eloquent young man, and I thought I should share his comment with all of you. Here’s what Sean had to say:
“I won’t tell you the name of the town I live in. It’s a small place and if anyone read this who lives here, they would immediately know it was me writing you. I’m not trying to be sneaky, but I have to be careful.
“I have wrestled since I was in middle school. I love wrestling. It’s a demanding sport. You have to stay focused and be disciplined, about everything from diet to training. That’s the way wrestling is.
“My problem is I’m gay and I have to hide it. I would say wrestling is the most non-gay sport there is. And if I came out to my teammates I would probably get my ass kicked. I mean it, I would. People think Vermont is some kind of liberal place and maybe it is in certain ways, but not when it comes to being gay and wrestling.
“I have read the comments you posted from other gay wrestlers and I totally agree with the guys who say they would never come out to their coach and teammates. As much as I love this sport I really hate the anti-gay remarks I hear from my teammates.
Wow. Okay, Sean I have posted your comment so others can hear your voice. I was never a wrestler; I’m way to skinny for the sport, but I understand the passion guys have for the sport. My nephew wrestled in high school and I tried to attend all his meets. I have great respect for guys who dedicate themselves to their team, and I wish homophobia wasn’t so prevalent in the sport, but I know it is.
Good luck, Sean.
I just returned form a beautiful three-mile walk on the beach, here on my little island. The weather this morning is perfect: 70 degrees F, sunny, and still. The Gulf looked like a mirror. I wore shorts and a sweatshirt, and I walked barefooted. What a great way to start a January day. I have much to do in the writing department, so I will close this post by wishing all of you a wonderful Friday, wherever you may be.