Rugby star Keegan Hirst has announced
that he's gay, making him Britain's first rugby league star to
publicly come out of the closet.
In an interview with the Sunday
Mirror, Hirst, the captain of the Batley Bulldogs, said that
he considered suicide: “On the worst days I'd think, 'I can't do
this. I'd rather be dead than for it all to come out.' …
Thankfully, I have friends and family I love and was able to talk
myself out of it.”
Hirst, 27, told his wife that he's gay
a few weeks ago after realizing that she blamed herself for their
recent breakup. The couple has two children.
“People keep saying I'm brave. I
don't feel brave. I'm just talking about me. There might be other
players in the same position I was. If there are, I'd tell them to
just be honest with themselves,” he told the Mirror.
He said that he was surprised by the
support he's received: “The support from my teammates and other
rugby league players has really surprised me. It's all been
“I'm comfortable in my own skin,
probably for the first time ever,” Hirst said. “I'm not
withholding anything and there's not that sense of dread.”