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College basketball player pens powerful coming out letter after being raped

2016-04-01
A college basketball player in the US has written a powerful coming out letter, after surviving a serious sexual assault. Nathan Fort, from Arkansas, has written a remarkably frank piece for OutSports in which he details his struggles coming to terms with his sexuality and how he balances it with his strong religious faith. He describes growing up in a very homophobic environment, in which which he was told that "gay automatically meant going to hell," and how he attempted suicide when he was younger. It was only at college that he worked up the courage to seek out other gay people, and met a guy who took him out. "It seemed like this was going to be my perfect first time with a guy," he says. natefort_face.0 However, things took a dark turn, and Fort explains, "He wrestled me out of the car. He sexually abused me. He drugged me. He raped me. He changed my life. It's a struggle to just write a few lines about it, but it's part of who I am now."

He never reported the crime, and briefly retreated back into the closet, dating girls, and closing out the experience he then associated with being gay.

"It took me another year to find the courage to be my true self," he says, explaining that he told girls first, but was more worried about his basketball teammates.

I will always play for you #GameDay

A photo posted by Nathan Fort (@nathanbeast30) on

"It turned out to be so much easier than I suspected," he says. "I spoke to each teammate, one by one, and for the most part they have supported me." He says that he does experience trouble in his home town, and with his religious parents, who "still don't understand me, but they reassure me constantly that they still love me." Fort also outlines his own strong faith, and credits it with helping him get through his trials. "Navigating my sexuality has been a difficult journey," he admits, "but I thank God for it. He provides me with the strength, courage, determination, heart, and love to live every day knowing some people can't accept me. I hope to help others find the same strength to deal with whatever struggles they encounter in their lives." He adds that his motto is: "Always be you. God created everyone different. He did that for a reason." Finally, he conclude: "To those of you who are reading this for the first time, I am still the same Nathan you know. I have been hiding my sexuality for quite some time, and I figured at some point I would have to let the world know. "Just like you, my sexual orientation doesn't define me; I'm more than a category. I wish I could have told you sooner."
Until next time Arkansas ✌️ A photo posted by Nathan Fort (@nathanbeast30) on
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