Olympic swimmer Daniel Jervis has come out, saying he wants to be a visible gay athlete at the upcoming Commonwealth Games.
Hailing from Wales, 26-year-old Jervis said he had struggled with his sexuality but was now ready to share his truth.
“I know what it’s like growing up and not liking who you are,” he told the BBC’s The LGBT Sport Podcast.
“It took 24 years to be who I was, but now I’m happy.”
“I look in the mirror and I like who I am.”
IN OTHER NEWS: Pride Month heartbreak as this gay flamingo couple splits up
Daniel Jervis said despite initially identifying as bisexual, he continued to struggle with his identity.
“It was always been something in the back of my mind, bugging me,” he said.
“I thought I was bisexual and had girlfriends that I loved – but it came to about three years ago where I knew I had to deal with this.”
‘I want them to know the real Dan’ 🏊♂️
Welsh Olympic swimmer Dan Jervis says he wants to inspire others after coming out as gay pic.twitter.com/jsNFSc9CFg
— BBC Sport Wales (@BBCSportWales) June 29, 2022
Jervis spoke of the moment he came out as gay to his girlfriend, who was shocked but supportive.
“I said to her: ‘I think I’m gay.
“I couldn’t even say: ‘I’m gay.’ It was still… I couldn’t say it. I was basically punching the words out.”
Daniel Jervis said he was inspired by other elite athletes who had come out in previous years and wanted to be that inspiration for someone else.
“I think that now is a good time [to come out], the Commonwealth Games are in a months time and there are going to be so many people watching that,” he said.
“There are so many countries in the Commonwealth where being gay is illegal.
“For me to be visual on that stage and inspire people is what I’m here to do.”
Looking towards his future, Jervis said he was happy to finally be his authentic self.
“I’ve got years ahead of me in the sport, it’s a sport that I love,” he said.
“And I want to be me while I’m doing it.”
For the latest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) news in Australia, visit qnews.com.au. Check out our latest magazines or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.