Tom Daley: “I am a gay man and an Olympic champion”


Tom Daley (Pic by Jim Thurston – Flickr: Tom Daley, CC BY-SA 2.0)

Tom Daley has used his Olympic gold win in synchronised diving to offer an inspiring message of hope to LGBTQ people.

Daley and diving partner Matty Lee took home gold medals for the UK in the men’s synchronised 10 metres platform at the Olympic Games in Tokyo on Monday.

This is the 27-year-old’s third Olympic medal after winning bronze at the London and Rio Games.

Daley’s gleeful husband, the Oscar-winning screenwriter Dustin Lance Black, tweeted: “No words! So so many tears! @TomDaley1994 you’re an OLYMPIC CHAMPION! Congratulations Tom and @MattyLee!”

Due to Covid-19 restrictions, Black was not able to join his husband in Tokyo to see his achievement in person. Instead, he and Daley’s mom, Debbie, watched live from Canada.

Speaking after his win, the diver told journalists: “I feel incredibly proud to say that I am a gay man and also an Olympic champion. I feel very empowered by that. When I was younger I didn’t think I’d ever achieve anything because of who I was. To be an Olympic champion now just shows that you can achieve anything.”

Daley, who has been diving since the age of seven,  also addressed the growing number of athletes who can be open about who they love and their sexual and gender identity.

“In terms of out athletes, there are more openly out athletes at these Olympic Games than any Olympic Games previously,” he said.

“I came out in 2013 and when I was younger I always felt like the one that was alone and different and didn’t fit. There was something about me that was never going to be as good as what society wanted me to be. And I hope that any young LGBT person out there can see that no matter how alone you feel right now, you are not alone. You can achieve anything.”

Daley married Black in 2017, and the couple welcomed their son, Robert, through surrogacy in 2018.

Asked about being a dad, he replied that, “It’s been the most amazing, life-changing journey for me and I can’t wait to go and see them, my husband and my son, to give them a big hug and be able to celebrate on this incredible journey that it has been.”


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