"In an ideal world, I wouldn't have to do this".

After years of rumours, whispering behind cupped hands and straight out harassment, Tom Daley, an English Olympic diver has confirmed publicly that he is dating a man. And while it’s a shame that the world has forced Tom to say something before he was ready to – the way he has done it, is quite simply wonderful.


Tom decided to use You Tube to tell the world – he wanted to set the record straight. And he has.

Tom says, that “In an ideal world, I wouldn’t be doing this video, because it shouldn’t matter.”

I agree Tom, it shouldn’t matter. And to me, it never has.

When did you know you were straight or gay? Or bi? Or any other sexual identity? 

Growing up I didn’t know anyone who was openly gay. But, I knew early that I was straight. A fact confirmed to me the first time I clapped eyes on footballer, Ian Roberts. Ironic, I know.

It was after weeks of pleading, that my parents agreed to take my brother and I to Jameroo recreational park. I was young, maybe 13 or 14. And, I wish I had been more grateful. In between watersides and toboggans, I sulked about the homemade ham sandwiches we were forced to eat for lunch.

That was until I noticed Ian Roberts. He was in the pool. Body glistening in the sun. An elite athlete. I knew who he was. As a family, we were avid rugby league fans. But I wanted to be sure. I asked my Dad.

All knowing, my Dad sensed that I wasn’t asking out of simple curiosity. I was asking because I thought he was hot. His response. “Yes, love. That’s Ian Roberts. But I wouldn’t get your hopes up, he bats for the other team.”

At the time, Ian’s sexuality was an open secret. A bit like, Bert Newton’s hair plugs. Not publicly acknowledged, but understood.

I was in free-fall. I couldn’t believe this towering man mountain standing before me, was gay. The only images I had of a gay men, resembled something like Cameron from Modern Family. Thankfully, we have all matured since then.


I went back to the rides, trying to put aside my disappointment at the thought I could never be Mrs Ian Roberts. And, over the years, I watched Ian’s career prosper. I watched the very difficult time Ian had when he decided to tell the world he was gay.

I secretly hoped that he would be able to find success without his sexuality defining him.

But Ian was hounded. I watched as the media, his fans and some team mates, use innuendo to demand he tell us, whether he was straight or gay.

Why did it matter? It didn’t change the fact that he was excellent front rower, representing his county.

Fast forward twenty years and the world hasn’t changed all that much. Sports stars are still regularly the subject of gay rumours. It is almost as if putting a label on them will make them more approachable or easier to barrack for.

Which brings me back to Tom Daley.

What’s great is that Tom says he still fancies girls. I think that’s brilliant. Today, it is far more socially acceptable to sit somewhere on the spectrum of sexuality than it ever was. I love that he’s owning that.

Not everyone is going to take this news well. Tom reveals that his family have had mixed reactions. And thankfully Tom has fellow diver Matthew Mitcham for support. Matthew believes Tom is an inspiration.

Thanks for being such a great role model Tom.

Please share this post if you too believe that sexuality can be fluid – and to show your support for Tom Daley. All love should be equal.