13 of the most read coming out stories of 2014
As 2014 draws to a close, PinkNews looks back on the coming out stories which have been most influential.
Readers often ask why we report on the comings out of influential figures and why it is still relevant. The answer, in part at least, is that young LGBT people need role models to look up to. As suicide rates among LGBT young people soar, and anti-gay climates are harboured in many countries, it is still a brave and a
Below are 13 of the most important coming out stories of 2014 (in no particular order)
1. Vicky Beeching – ‘God loves me just the way I am’
In the interview, she talked about her background, growing up in Kent, first as part of the Pentecostal church, then the evangelical wing of the Church of England, but says she knew that she was attracted to women from the age of 12.
Tweeting, she wrote: “It’s taken all my courage, and all these years, for me to finally do this interview.”
2. US Conservative Rabbi Gil Steinlauf
In the letter he wrote: “With much pain and tears, together with my beloved wife, I have come to understand that I could walk my path with the greatest strength, with the greatest peace in my heart, with the greatest healing and wholeness, when I finally acknowledged that I am a gay man.”
3. Emily Brothers – Labour Parliamentary Candidate
Labour’s Emily Brothers – who is standing for Parliament in Sutton and Cheam – opened up about being transgender in the interview.
Ms Brothers – who lost her sight to glaucoma as a child – was a key figure in securing Disability Living Allowance for blind people, and opened up about her gender transition for the first time.
4. The world’s second strongest man
Rob Kearney, who at just 25 placed second in the World’s Strongest Man competition, publicly came out as gay, revealing that he has a boyfriend Joey Aleixo.
5. Sky Sports reporter: ‘I love football just the same as any straight guy’
6. Debbie Harry – ‘Let’s say women are more sensual…’
The Heart of Glass singer told the Daily Mail that rumours about her past sexual relationships were all true, saying: “‘I don’t know if I have any specific requirements. Just somebody nice, who has a good sense of humour and loves to have sex. What more could you ask for?”
7. Kellie Maloney
A controversial figure, Kellie Maloney came out as transgender The former boxing legend, and Lennox Lewis manager revealed in an interview with the Sunday Mirror that she felt she had always had a “female brain”, but that she feared coming out over how the boxing world would react. She later entered the Big Brother House.
Maloney, also a former UKIP candidate, told the BBC previously she would not campaign in the London borough of Camden, because there were “too many gays”.
8. Chilean sailor – ‘I have no reason to hide’
Mauricio Ruiz, 24, told a televised news conference his decision had “not been easy”, but he wanted to help fight homophobic discrimination.
9. Latvian Foreign Minister – ‘I am proud to be gay’
Edgars Rinkevics announced to his more than 13k followers that he wanted to “proudly announce” that he is gay.
Following the message the 41-year-old wrote: “Good luck all of you”.
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10. Legendary Australian swimmer Ian Thorpe
The five-time Olympic gold medallist, 31, faced rumours about his sexuality for years, which he has always previously denied.
He last spoke about the rumours in 2012, saying: “For the record, I am not gay and all my sexual experiences have been straight. I’m attracted to women, I love children and aspire to have a family one day.”
11. Miss Spain 2013
Patricia Yurena Rodríguez, who won the modelling competition last year, posted a photo on Instagram with her partner, the Spanish DJ and singer Vanesa Klein, with the caption “Romeo and Juliet”
12. TOWIE’s Charlie King
The former TOWIE star, who was rumoured to be making a comeback on the show, came out as gay on ITV programme This Morning.
13. NFL hopeful Michael Sam
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The player – who has had brief spells with the St Louis Rams and the Dallas Cowboys – made history as the first openly gay NFL player, though he is yet to play an on-season game.
He was drafted to the Rams in May this year, before being cut in August – and subsequently spent less than two months on the Cowboys practice team before being cut again in October.
He came out on 9 February 2014.