Olympic gymnast Danell Leyva has come out publicly, saying that while he's still trying to udnerstand his sexuality he has know for years that he's not "straight".
The Cuban-American athlete, who competes for Team USA, shared a heartfelt series of messages on twitter last month to mark National Coming Out Day.
Leyva, who won bronze in the individual all-round competition at London 2012 and silver in the parallel bars and horizontal bar silver at Rio 2016, said that opening up about his sexuality publicly was "absolutely terrifying" but that that "time was right".
A thread for #NationalComingOutDay
For a long time I’ve known that I wasn’t straight. But because of certain very personal reasons, I always rejected that side of me. Earlier this year I finally understood that I’m bi/pan (still trying to figure that one out) but...— Danell Johan Leyva (@DanellJLeyva) October 11, 2020
"For a long time I’ve known that I wasn’t straight. But because of certain very personal reasons, I always rejected that side of me", wrote Leyva, 28. "Earlier this year I finally understood that I’m bi/pan (still trying to figure that one out) but...
"I also realized that, as of now at least, I’m not attracted to cis men. (That comes with those personal reasons I just mentioned). But I felt that it was time for me to finally share this with you all.
"As most of you can imagine, this is absolutely terrifying....
"One of the main reasons why I’ve never come out publicly is because throughout my life, for whatever reason, other people’s perception of my own sexuality have always been imposed onto me and it has always made me reject it even more. It made me uncomfortable. Not because...
"I was offended, because being gay is in no way offensive, but more so because it was and always has been/felt very intrusive.
"So this post, apart from being my way of sharing this with you all is also a reminder.....
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"A reminder to check the way we say certain things to people. Because sometimes our hearts and intentions may be in the right place, but we never truly know what they’re dealing with.
"I love you all. Happy #NationalComingOutDay."