“Given that’s it IS #pridemonth & I am beyond honored to share the most coveted DNA cover of 2021 with the greatest lover/HUMAN of all time,” wrote Sheridan referencing Roberts. “I understand why @dnamagazine chose LOVE over… another pic of a guy with a towel.”
“FYI,” Sheridan continued, “I AM still a human (nonbinary/bi/me/Hughman) but I’m in a monogamous relationship with another human, who I love. I don’t accept a label cause it limits me… if you want it; take it. I chose zero labels for no other reason except the exclusion, limitations, separation, I believe are all one, deeeeep down. &…who knows? Why chose?!! Be you. Be true. Be free: to BE, to JUST BE… you, a human, same as me.”
The 35-year-old closed their missive urging folks to “READ THE ARTICLE, you’ll laugh. I did.”
At this writing the post has received over 15K ‘Likes’ including a comment of fire emojis from Aussie pop-star/actress Natalie Imbruglia.
In an October 2020 essay for Stellar Magazine, Sheridan shared that they had been in relationships with both women and men in the past, but preferred not to put a label on their sexuality.
In the essay, the actor admitted they’d been bullied as a teenager for being gay, even though they were sexually attracted to the opposite sex at the time. It wasn’t until they moved to Sydney to attend the National Institute for Dramatic Arts, that they fell in love a man.
“I finally met a guy who I connected with emotionally, mentally and physically,” Sheridan wrote, saying they were “over the moon” because they realized they “could finally be what people always wanted me to be.”
But the relationship would eventually end, and they began dating a woman. Eschewing this or that sexual identity, Sheridan wrote, “I believe labels are for clothes, not people.”
On March 5, 2021, Sheridan proposed to now-fiancé Roberts (a former DNA Magazine cover model) at the opening night performance of their stage show Hughman.
A familiar face on Australian television, Sheridan starred in the long-running show Packed To The Rafters, winning four Logie Awards (Australia’s excellence in TV honors) for their work. They are currently working on a spin-off of the series, Back To The Rafters, set to debut this September on Amazon Prime Video.
But it’s hard to not think of Michael Sam in this heady time.
Sam, as many remember, famously came out as gay in advance of the 2104 NFL draft.
After a stellar season for the University of Missouri in 2013, he was a first-team All-American and named the Associated Press co-defensive player of the year in the Southeastern Conference. Teammates voted him Missouri’s most valuable player.
At that time, only one player who had earned that honor had been selected outside the top 33 picks at an NFL draft. When Sam came out the New York Times noted that he was “projected to be chosen in the early rounds of the N.F.L.”
But months later, Sam sweated through hours and hours of the draft until finally, in the 7th and final round, the St. Louis Rams made him their next to last pick. Sam was number 249 out of 256 at that NFL draft.
In the end, Sam was cut by the Rams before the regular season. He was picked up for the Dallas Cowboys practice squad but a month later he was released. He never made it to a 53-man roster in the NFL.
Conor Orr, for Sports Illustrated, writes, “Sam, essentially, gave up his dream of playing football to be the league and media’s crash test dummy, as everyone in football’s orbit pinballed through ways to have thoughtful and productive conversations about sexuality and acceptance in the locker room.”
In 2015, Sam was signed by the Montreal Alouettes and on August 7, 2015, he became the first out gay player to play in a CFL regular season game. He announced his retirement from football a week later due to mental health reasons. He currently shares his experiences as a motivational speaker.
Still a class act, early this morning Sam tweeted his congratulations to Nassib.
“Carl Nassib thank you for owning your truth and especially your donation to the @TrevorProject,” wrote Sam. “LBGTQ people are more likely to commit suicide than heterosexuals. I hope and pray people will take note to this. Thank you again Carl and look forward to seeing you play on the field.”
Carl Nassib thank you for owning your truth and especially your donation to the @TrevorProject. LBGTQ people are more likely to commit suicide than heterosexuals. I hope and pray people will take note to this. Thank you again Carl and look forward to seeing you play on the field.
Less than an hour later, Sam followed that with another message – this time to victims of bullying:
“To anyone young or old, black or white, straight or gay are being bullied by others please know this, I stand with you in your time of need and in your hour of triumph, I am your friend and your brother,” tweeted Sam. “Even though I may never see you, hug you, or even kiss you, I love you.”
To anyone young or old, black or white, straight or gay are being bullied by others please know this, I stand with you in your time of need and in your hour of triumph, I am your friend and your brother. Even though I may never see you, hug you, or even kiss you, I love you 💜
Some wonder if Nassib might experience some of what Sam saw during his short time in the NFL. But there are big differences between the two scenarios.
One, Nassib is already a veteran NFL player with five seasons under his belt. His team, coaches and front office already know him.
And, last year he signed a three-year $25 million contract with the Las Vegas Raiders. It’s hard to imagine Nassib’s value to the Raiders suddenly taking a dive.
Plus, we’re 7 years past Sam’s NFL experience. In that time, marriage equality has become the law of the land. And while LGBTQ equality isn’t quite there yet, we are making progress forward thanks in great part to that increased visibility Nassib mentioned in his coming out.
Folks in the Twitterverse did take some time to recognize Michael Sam and his journey as “the first.”
Carl Nassib, of the Las Vegas Raiders (my town!!!), has come out as gay becoming the first openly gay active player in the NFL.
“What’s up people,” Nassib wrote on Instagram. “I’m at my house in West Chester Pennsylvania. I just wanted to take a quick moment to say that I’m gay. I’ve been meaning to do this for a while now but finally feel comfortable getting it off my chest. I really have the best life, the best family, friends and job a guy can ask for.”
“I’m a pretty private person so I hope you guys know that I’m not doing this for attention,” he continued. “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.”
“I actually hope that one day, videos like this and the whole coming out process are not necessary, but until then I will do my best and my part to cultivate a culture that’s accepting and compassionate and I’m going to start by donating $100,000 to the Trevor Project. They’re an incredible organization, they’re the number one suicide-prevention service for LGBTQ youth in America and they’re truly doing incredible things. I’m very excited to be a part of it and help in any way that I can and I’m really pumped to see what the future holds.”
Actor Colton Haynes (Teen Wolf, Arrow) took to social media Thursday night to share a photo he spent years trying to erase from the internet.
The image was used on the cover of the March 2006 issue of XY, a magazine aimed at young LGBTQ readers.
Haynes shares that he was a teenager and working as a model when the homoerotic photo was taken.
In his Instagram post, Haynes says for many years he was “incredibly ashamed” of the photo and worried that it would affect his career.
The 32-year-old says looking at the photo made him sad as it reminded of him of a time “before I was placed with voice & movement coaches to straighten me up for the cameras…before I learned to see my queerness as a liability.”
Haynes shares candidly he feels “jealous” of the boy he sees in the image: “so open, so free.” And he now realizes he “had to be taught that it wasn’t ok to be who he was.”
“Being gay is worth celebrating,” Haynes adds. “I wish I’d figured that out sooner, but I’m so glad I know it now. To everyone in the LGBTQIA+ community, I hope you celebrate yourselves this month & always, exactly as you are.”
The post has received over 570,000 likes on Instagram with several of Haynes’s famous friends chiming in with their support.
Actress Keke Palmer wrote, “Thank you for sharing your art. How beautiful you were then and now. I thank you for posting this and hate what you went through but so glad it’s made you a vessel to cast out the darkness with truth and light!!”
Michelle Visage (RuPaul’s Drag Race) replied “LOUD AND PROUD BABY”
Charlie Carver (Boys in the Band) sent some heart emoji love and Food Network host Jonathan Bennett responded, “This is so powerful. I feel you Buddy. Love who you were then and love who you are now.”
Fortunately, Haynes is now much more comfortable in his own skin. His Instagram feed shows he recently did a photoshoot for GQ Thailand that looks pretty Pride-ful.
According to the study, published in the journal Psychology of Sexual Orientation, 66 percent of gay and bi males aged 13-18 are out to their mothers. Forty-nine percent indicated they are out to their dads.
This is a huge change from the 1990s when just 40 percent of adolescent boys were out to their moms and less than 30 percent were open about their attractions with their dads.
The numbers come from a survey of 1,194 Generation Z boys (born between 1998 and 2018) with same-sex attractions.
The data also shows different factors – religion, identity, race – can play a part in terms of who is more comfortable being out with their parents.
Not surprisingly, those who come from a more religious background are less likely to be out than those less religious.
White survey participants were more likely to be out than Black respondents.
And those who identify as gay were more comfortable in being open with their parents than bisexual male teens or those less sure of their sexuality.
Lead author David A. Moskowitz, Ph.D., said in a statement that this information can help psychologists understand what factors “move teenagers to share this type of information with those closest to them.”
Moskowitz noted in the study that there’s more work to be done (like doing a similar survey among females in the same age group), but added, ”We can now compare these practices with how other generations deal with these issues and think about what it all means for future generations.”