Former soccer star Thomas Beattie has
announced that he's gay.
Beattie, who played for teams in North
America, Europe, and Asia, came out in an Instagram post and an ESPN
“It's time to share something very
personal to me,” he wrote on Instagram. “It's easier to sit in
silence but the real challenge is to speak up and for me it's time
[to] live my truth and hopefully affect change in some way.”
“I am a brother, son, friend, and I'm
gay,” he added. “It took me a long time to accept who I am and I
hope it is a little easier for the next generation.”
Beattie, 33, was forced to retired at
29 when he suffered a life-threatening head injury in 2015. In his
essay, Beattie said that the injury changed his outlook.
“I told myself, If I get through
this, I'm going to allow myself the time and space to embrace who I
really am,” he
wrote. “Life is so fragile, and the things that once mattered
no longer did. No amount of money, houses, cars, or achievements in
football was ever going to bring me contentment if I didn't look
inward and understand my feelings.”
Beattie grew up in England and moved to
the United States at 19 to attend college. His 10-year soccer career
included stints with clubs in Scotland, Canada, and Singapore.