Figure skater John G. “Johnny” Weir says he gets called miss and ma'am but pays no mind to such comments.

The 3-time U.S. National Figure Skating Champion with a knack for being flamboyant says being unique is something that should be celebrated.

“People have respected me for being an individual and thinking outside the box. I dance to the beat of my own DJ,” Weir told gay networking website

“People will respect me and follow me in any way I want. The public's respect can't be bought. I am so respected and loved around the world, Olympic champion or not.”

And he adds that people who are unique should “be brave.”

“Stand up and be whoever you are and whatever you want to be,” he says. “Never be afraid because there is a whole community of people who love you and accept you. Look to Lady Gaga and what she has created for people who are unique.”

“I still get called miss or ma'am, but I am a strong person with a thick skin,” he adds.

Weir is expected to reveal more about his personal life in his upcoming memoir Welcome To My World, which is set for a January 11, 2011 release.