We wanted to post something today for all the gay, bi, and questioning sports-minded guys that read BornLikeThis. There’s so many guys that don’t live a stereotypic gay life, but because our schools, sports organizations, and communities aren’t always gay-friendly, it’s hard for athletes to buck the norm and be fully, openly who they are. Part of the work ahead is to change how sports, fraternities, and schools see and value gay-identifying people. Part of the work is building ourselves up so that we can be up to the challenge of coming out, whenever we choose to do it. To reach that second goal, here are some resources for inspiration or to find support. You will feel a lot less alone after spending some time with these websites.
OutSports: OutSports is an online magazine and community site about gay athletes and athletics. They cover national sports, Olympic sports (you must check out diver Matt Mitcham!), hot straight athletes, opinion pieces, and personal stories from GLBT athletes on their struggles with coming out and coming into their own. There are blogs, podcasts, photo galleries, member profiles, and forums to take in.
GLSEN: This organization works hard at bringing progress to schools, advocating for GLBT students and teachers, and gathering data to show school administrators and legislators the reality of life for gay students in the United States. GLSEN is a national organization that has chapters in most states, and it is possible to sponsor a new chapter if there isn’t one in your area. Since middle school and high school sports is often ground zero for bullying or at the root of an intolerant culture in schools, its important that athletes get involved in fighting for change. There is a lot of information on their site that you can use to start a GSA or advocate for changes in policy in your schools, that benefit student athletes and the whole student body.
Changing The Game – The GLSEN Sports Project: This is one of GLSEN’s initiatives. It is an education & advocacy project working specifically on GLBT issues in K-12 athletics and physical education classes. There are ways for students to get involved.
RealJock: RealJock is a social network and community site with profile pages, forums, and featured articles. If you’re interested in fitness, you might find the articles helpful. If you like to banter with people and check out hot athletes, messaging on the forums or writing people from their profiles might be your thing. After being on this site a couple years, I have to say its not a utopia. People are not always the best to each other, even gay athletes toward each other. But, its a start, and its the only social network I know that’s dedicated to bringing gay jocks together. Before you click the link, you have to promise to do your part to be kind to people and make it an even better place.
Brad, Robert, & Ben: These three high school athletes identify as gay or bi, come from different parts of the country, but found each other and collaborated on a blog. They no longer update the blog, but there’s a couple years worth of posts to read their stories and add your comments.
Photo Credit: stock.xchng
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