Michael Sam: My family ‘abused me daily’ because I am gay
Out professional American Football star Michael Sam will speak of how his brothers subjected him to homophobia daily when he was growing up.
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.
In an interview to be aired this weekend, Sam will tell Oprah that his bullies called him a “fag… because I was different.”
He said his brothers would “abuse me daily”, saying “They called me a lot of things. They called me a fag. They called me gay. They called me anything you could think of — just to hurt me.”
On one of the acts which hurt him the most, Sam says he received an MVP trophy, but that it was destroyed by one of his brothers in front of him.
He said: “I was so proud of those trophies … and my older brother, he was so jealous he just broke them in front of me. And it was the saddest thing.”
Sam had initially made plans for an Oprah documentary while playing for the Rams in May, but it was postponed to allow him to concentrate on his playing career.
However, the documentary and an exclusive interview can air this month now he is a free agent, and not signed to a particular team.
Oprah Winfrey Network will air the exclusive documentary, ‘Michael Sam’ on Saturday, December 27.