Former “Bachelor” star Colton Underwood came out as gay in an interview with Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts on April 14.
“I’ve ran from myself for a long time,” Underwood told Roberts. “I’ve hated myself for a long time.”
Like many newly out LGBTQ people, being hunkered at home due to COVID-19 gave Underwood space and freedom to examine his sexuality.
“And I’m gay,” he added. “And I came to terms with that earlier this year and have been processing it. And the next step in all of this was sort of letting people know.”
But the feelings Underwood acknowledged privately about his sexuality differed from his public persona. In 2018, Underwood competed for the love of Becca Kufrin as a contestant on season 14 of the “Bachelorette.” The following year, the then 26-year-old Indiana native secured a role as the “Bachelor” and chose Cassie Randolph as his girlfriend.
At that time, Underwood recalled “praying to God” and thanking him for making him straight. However, the couple soon split and were embroiled in controversy. Last year, Randolph put a restraining order against Underwood, accusing him of harassing, stalking her, and placing a tracking device on her car, GMA reported. While Randolph has dismissed these claims, the ex-reality star apologized for his behavior during the GMA interview, adding that he was battling an “internal fight.”
“I wish that I would’ve been courageous enough to fix myself before I broke anybody else,” he told GMA.
Underwood has found some peace and acceptance with family in the midst of his coming out journey. People closest to the star wished he came out to them earlier.
“And when I hear that, I wish I would have had faith in my friends and my family a little bit more,” he told GMA. “The only reason I’m sitting down with you today is because I have the love and the support of my friends and my family.”
Nevertheless, it is a process, and Underwood is beginning to unravel much of the homophobia he learned in Catholic grade school and on sports teams. Underwood recalls people using “gay” to belittle others who did not share his experience.
“I think there’s a lot of things, when I look back, I’m like, ‘No wonder I held it in,'” he said.
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