on his terms

Former Mister Venezuela Francisco León proves there’s no timeline for coming out

 

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A post shared by Francisco Leon (@franciscoleon)

This profile is part of Queerty’s 2021 Out For Good series, recognizing public figures who’ve had the courage to come out and make a difference in the past year, in celebration of National Coming Out Day on October 11.

Name: Francisco León, 40

Bio: The popular Venezuelan pop singer, model, and TV presenter’s career first took off in 2004 when he entered and won the Mister Venezuela competition. Winning the title opened the door to a TV career, which included hosting the two-hour morning show Portada’s for two years.

In 2008, he released his first album. And in 2013, he represented Venezuela in the Viña del Mar International Song Festival. His second album was released in 2015.

Coming out: In June 2021, León posted a three-minute video to Instagram revealing his sexuality publicly for the first time.

“It took me many years to tell you about my truth,” he wrote the caption. “Today I invite you to be tolerant, loving, respectful, but above all human. … I always wanted to speak from the heart. I love! And yes, I’m gay.”

In the video, he said that he always “dreamed of this moment” and that it felt “liberating” to finally speak his truth.

“I want to be a testimony of those people who have struggled and have come forward despite the circumstances and who are loved by their family and friends, who know their truth from a very young age,” he said. “Thank you, thank you for listening.”

 

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A post shared by Francisco Leon (@franciscoleon)

Chosen family: Since sharing his truth, León has been living his best life on Instagram, embracing his identity and posting thirsty #Instagay photos for his growing number of followers.

He also regularly shares his thoughts on Twitter and Facebook. Last month, he posted a story about someone who had recently criticized him for not coming out until he was almost 40.

“Courage is a virtue that many lack,” he wrote in response. “I came out at 40 because I felt prepared, because my partner at that time preferred not to be public. I came out at 40 because it was the moment in my life that deserved it. I came out at 40 because I feel more empathy than pain.”

“Nobody knows your truth,” he concluded, “only you.”

Scroll down for some of those #Instagay pics from León’s page…

 

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A post shared by Francisco Leon (@franciscoleon)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Francisco Leon (@franciscoleon)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Francisco Leon (@franciscoleon)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Francisco Leon (@franciscoleon)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Francisco Leon (@franciscoleon)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Francisco Leon (@franciscoleon)