Skip to main content

Home News News World

Rebecca Adlington’s ex-husband Harry Needs comes out publicly as bisexual

The 28-year-old dad-of-one opened up about his sexuality to mark Father's Day and Pride month.

By Will Stroude

Harry Needs, ex-husband of British Olympic swimmer Rebecca Adlington, has come out publicly as bisexual.

The 28-year-old designer, who was married to Adlington from 2014-2016 and has a five-year-old daughter with the double Olympic gold medalist, opened up about his sexuality in a Q&A on Instagram on Sunday (22 June), saying he hoped to inspire others who might be struggling.

Asked about his sexuality by a follower, Needs replied: “This is a question I’ve avoided every day of my life so far, mainly because I strongly dislike labels dispite [sic] not knowing the solution to avoid them.

View this post on Instagram

3 years ago… time is flying guys.

A post shared by Harryneeds (@harryneeds) on

“But if I had to answer I would tell people I’ve always been bisexual.”

“Today is #fathersday #pridemonth and the last day #mensmentalhealthawareness week I couldn’t waste an opportinity as golden as that.”

Needs, himself a former swimmer, began a relationship with Adlington, 31, when the pair were still in their teens. Despite splitting in 2016 after just two years of marriage, the pair have continue to co-parent their daughter, Summer, and earlier this month shared a picture of the family celebrating Summer’s fifth birthday.

“I’ve actually been content with my sexuality for many years now, but it can be a confusing journey at the start”, Needs wrote.

“Once I was married to Beck, there was no need for me to publicly share my sexuality but I hope my journey can inspire many others to be true to themselves… I’m always here to anyone who wants to reach out.”

He went on: “I’ve known my own sexuality since I was 13, but I met Becky when I was 17 and I started that journey in my life with her. 

“Although all my friends and family know, I’m only sharing this side of myself to everyone now in the hope that I can help others.”

The dad-of-one added that his sexuality was not related to his split from Adlington, who retired from professional sport in 2013 and has since worked as a commentator for BBC Sport.

View this post on Instagram

Perfect Christmas Eve eve with my number one wishing we could feel our toes again ❄️🇪🇸

A post shared by Harryneeds (@harryneeds) on

“@beckadlington and I NEVER got divorced because of my sexuality. Becky is an absolutely incrediblely [sic] supportive friend, and has been there from the start and always will be,” Needs explained.

“I will also NEVER share the details as to why me and Becky went our separate ways, hope you can respect that.”

He added: “My family are fully supportive and very unjudgemental in general… we stand for equality in the many aspects of life.

“I’ve had long lasting relationships with both ‘sexes’; there’s not a relationship in my life I haven’t treasured, I’ve been very fortunate with all the people I’ve crossed paths and grown with.”

Needs also shared a series of pictures of himself with Summer on his Instagram page to mark Father’s Day, writing in the caption: “In honor of #pride Special shout out to all the bisexual dads out there, I see you, I hear you, I feel you.”