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Coming Out

U.S. national team player, MLS star Robbie Rogers comes out, announces retirement

'My secret is gone, I am a free man, I can move on and live my life as my creator intended'
Friday, February 15, 2013

“My secret is gone, I am a free man, I can move on and live my life as my creator intended.” And with that statement, former Major League Soccer player Robbie Rogers announced Friday that he is gay, and — at the age of 25 — is retiring from the sport.

Formerly with the Columbus Crew, Leeds United, and U.S. National Team, Roger’s coming out was announced Friday in an early morning post on his personal blog, where he wrote, “It’s 1 A.M. in London as I write this and I could not be happier with my decision. Life is so full of amazing things.”

Robbie Rogers
AP File photo by Marcio Jose Sanchez


For the past 25 year I have been afraid, afraid to show whom I really was because of fear. Fear that judgment and rejection would hold me back from my dreams and aspirations. Fear that my loved ones would be farthest from me if they knew my secret. Fear that my secret would get in the way of my dreams.

[...]

Life is only complete when your loved ones know you. When they know your true feelings, when they know who and how you love. Life is simple when your secret is gone. Gone is the pain that lurks in the stomach at work, the pain from avoiding questions, and at last the pain from hiding such a deep secret.

Secrets can cause so much internal damage. People love to preach about honesty, how honesty is so plain and simple. Try explaining to your loved ones after 25 years you are gay. Try convincing yourself that your creator has the most wonderful purpose for you even though you were taught differently.

I always thought I could hide this secret. Football was my escape, my purpose, my identity. Football hid my secret, gave me more joy than I could have ever imagined… I will always be thankful for my career. I will remember Beijing, The MLS Cup, and most of all my teammates. I will never forget the friends I have made a long the way and the friends that supported me once they knew my secret.

Now is my time to step away. It’s time to discover myself away from football. It’s 1 A.M. in London as I write this and I could not be happier with my decision. Life is so full of amazing things. I realized I could only truly enjoy my life once I was honest. Honesty is a bitch but makes life so simple and clear. My secret is gone, I am a free man, I can move on and live my life as my creator intended.

Most recently, Rogers played for Stevenage in England’s League One, on loan from Leeds United, and has represented the United States 18 times at senior international level.

Rogers is also co-owner of the menswear brand, Halsey.

You can read his complete blog post here.

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25 more reader comments:

  1. Congratulations Robbie!! I with you all the happiness that your Creator has in store for you!

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 11:21am
  2. Congratulations Robbie! I’ll pray along side with you to our creator..:D

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 11:23am
  3. I regret that he has to retire to be himself. I hope one day that will not be the case.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 11:25am
  4. Im so proud of you. Poeple like you and chely wright and ellen and all the other stars that came out on tv its not easy hiding who you are.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 11:27am
  5. good for him
    iam glad

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 11:39am
  6. ★★★★★

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 11:55am
  7. <3 PEACE BE WITH YOU, MAY YOUR JOURNEY BE HAPPY!

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 11:57am
  8. Very unfortunate he feels that he must retire. I guess the scrutiny from other players would be unbearable.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 12:22pm
  9. Good for him.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 12:24pm
  10. Welcome to Freedom, Robbie! may your life be filled with love!!!

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 12:42pm
  11. Congratulations and welcome to the rest of your life! Way to go!

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 12:48pm
  12. Congrats.now you can be you!

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 1:00pm
  13. Mixed reaction,

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 1:28pm
  14. I think his coming out is important. Someone needs to come out while active in his sport.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 1:31pm
  15. Would have been nice if he would have came out WHILE PLAYING! Much bigger impact!

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 1:52pm
  16. i agree with ya Tami Miler….it would…and it’s TIME, that sports stars doi tit while STILL PLAYING.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 2:36pm
  17. @Tami and Alisa, if you are not gay then you don’t know the stigma you face. I wish many people would come out of the closet but I do understand their dilemas

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 3:01pm
  18. Welcome to the family, Robbie. Its a good feeling, isn’t it, to be honest and proud of who and what you are.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 5:59pm
  19. We all face dilemmas and doubts in coming out, and we all risk everything we have to do so. Our family, our friends,our jobs and a lot more besides. The basics are no different for me than for a celebrity. I found, in my youth, that being comfortable and at peace with myself was its own coming out; by the time I actually told people, they were amused that I had taken so long to tell them.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 6:01pm
  20. welcome to the family

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 7:20pm
  21. Go Robbie,!!
    PRIDE!! RESPECT!!

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 7:39pm
  22. Congrats! You are with people that love you for who you are.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 8:12pm
  23. You go boy! Very cute too :)

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 8:43pm
  24. Its too bad he had to retire to come out.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 8:44pm
  25. It is tough to hear that. It was such beautiful article though.

    Posted on Friday, February 15, 2013 at 10:16pm