This is why Queer Eye’s Antoni Porowski doesn’t want to be labelled as ‘gay’
Queer Eye‘s Antoni Porowski does not want to say he is gay because it “dishonours women that I’ve been in love with” and prefers to live without a label.
The food and wine expert has previously said he’s dated more women than men in the past and that, since dating men, he’s contended with body image issues.
“I feel like if I do refer to myself as gay, which would make it easier for people to understand sometimes, I feel like it dishonours women that I’ve been in love with,” he told GQ magazine.
He added that he prefers to live without a label, though “fluid” or “queer” come close.
“I don’t really know and I kind of like not knowing,” he said.
Across his nearing three year journey with the Fab Five, he said that the work and the cast have helped him to “get to a place where I’m a lot more comfortable in my skin”.
Queer Eye star has been in therapy since he was 17.
Porowski, 35, also opened up about being in therapy since he was a teen.
“I’m very afraid in life, of everything, the small things, the big things,” he said.
“Part of me didn’t want to go [on the show]. I was thinking: ‘I’m not gay enough. I’m not enough of a chef. I’m not all of these things.'”
While he harbours such fears even today, Porowski said that the Emmy-awarded show has given him a platform to open up about his social anxieties.
“Any opportunity to advocate for mental health awareness is incredibly important because it’s something that I’ve struggled with and I continue to struggle with, but I’m figuring it out,” he added.
In an episode in Queer Eye‘s fourth series, he candidly opened up about his strained relationship with his mother.
‘How Wanda Got Her Groove Back’ saw Porowski meet Wanda Winters, who had avoided telling her adult daughters that she loved them. Something that prompted Porowski to speak out about his own mother.
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Feeling the fear has kept Porowski buoyant, however, who has not let his ADHD conquer or define him. He said he refuses to lie there “feeling sorry for myself, which I spend a lot of my life doing”.
Antoni Porowski: ‘I’m still trying to define what that means for me.’
Porowski has been regularly candid about his mental health, as well as his turbulent relationship with his sexuality. Last month, he admitted that the thought of being a “spokesperson” for the community stresses him out.
The anxiety, he said, of not being “gay enough” has haunted him especially as he himself is unsure of how he identifies.
“I’m still trying to define what that means for me,” Porowski said.
“I think I did certainly have a bit of shame being fluid when I was growing up because I didn’t know too many people who I could relate to.”