Canadian Olympic swimmer Markus Thormeyer, who competed in 2016 in Rio, talks about coming out as gay to his teammates in an emotional essay in Outsports.
Said Thormeyer: “I thought it would be easy for me to keep my sexuality a secret with my new training group, at least until the Olympic qualifications in April 2016. I was wrong. I found out pretty fast how hard it was going to be for me to keep not to come out to my teammates. The following months in the closet were difficult and keeping my sexuality a secret got progressively harder every day.”
“Hiding my sexuality became a huge distraction to my training and was starting to affect the relationships with my teammates too,” Thormeyer added. “Some days I dreaded going to the pool in fear that my sexuality would be exposed. I’d show up late and leave early to social gatherings and workouts. Some days it would even spiral and I would question why I was swimming and be scared of my own goals.”
Eventually Thormeyer decided to tell his teammates he was nervous about going on a date with a guy, and he was rewarded with “the best feeling in the world.”
Check out his full essay at Outsports.