Naturally, we are fans of any organized activity in which muscular young men wear next to nothing. But we are particularly delighted when one of those men decides to be openly gay and all of his colleagues support him. Bonus points when it happens in a conservative state.
Such is the case at the University of Texas. SB Nation delivers the latest account of heartwarming allies who will give you all the feels: “Junior Matt Korman didn’t want to hide this side of himself any longer — and he wanted to date openly,” writes Cyd Zeigler.
Korman sent his team an email explaining that he’d been doing a lot of soul-searching. Over the last year, depression had been affecting his health and causing him to consider quitting the sport he loved. He blamed the closet for his malaise, and was making the decision to come out to everyone.
It’s a story that most of us have been through ourselves, one way or another: “ I was growing tired of all the lying, dishonesty, and pretending,” he told his team. “I want you to know me for who I am.”
And now for the amazing twist: his team was totally supportive, including the guys from “the middle of nowhere conservative Texas.” He adds, “I’ve gotten zero negative feedback.”
So, apparently this is the planet we live on now: one in which a Texas sports team loves their gay teammate. Not bad.
Read Korman’s full email below.
The last year has been a rather difficult one for me and I have spent a lot of time soul searching and trying to figure out which end is up. One thing in particular has taken me quite a long time to come to terms with, and I want to address it here and now because it’s way past due.
Within the past year, I have fallen into a state of depression, which has deeply affected my life. I have had a hard time sleeping at night, eating, and have lost a lot of interest in swimming. For the first time in my career, I was ready to quit swimming at the end of the summer. Not many people have noticed something has been wrong. The ones that did, I just blamed all the stress on my schoolwork, which has been my scapegoat. But, I miss sleeping at night; being happy and being the person I used to be when it didn’t really matter. Although this has been something I have known for a while, it hit me particularly hard more recently as I have realized that I’m not getting any younger and would like to start dating and enjoy the simple things of life that I have been missing out on. When I was younger I thought I was only curious or it was just a phase for me, but have come to terms that I’m actually gay. (There, I finally said it)
For a long time I tried to be someone that I am not. By opening up and talking about it I have learnt that this is normal and its okay to be who I am. I have accepted myself for who I am. There is nothing to be ashamed of. It is not something that I choose. It just is.
Please know that I am telling you this about myself because I love you guys and I really want you to know this important part of me. I was growing tired of all the lying, dishonesty, and pretending. You all have always been there for me and supported me in everything that I do. You are and forever will be my brothers. I simply couldn’t continue to hide this from you anymore because it was slowly killing me. I want you to know me for who I am. I pray that this will not change anything, but I know for some of you this is uneasy. I want you all to know that I am here to have an open dialogue. If you have questions or concerns please be honest with me as I am being with you. Do not hesitate to ask me questions if you have any (appropriate ones). I know this email has been a bit heavy and I apologize for that. All I can do is hope you will accept me for who I am and realize that I really haven’t changed. I am still the same me.
I love you guys & thank you for listening.