Robbie Rogers: Coming out gay has taught me to have faith in people

Sun. December 22, 2013 9:56 AM by

LA Galaxy winger Robbie Rogers says coming out gay has taught him to give people a chance.

The 26-year-old Rogers, who debuted with the LA Galaxy after coming out gay and announcing his retirement from soccer, made his remarks in a BBC Newsnight interview.

When asked if he had heard from colleagues who wanted to come out, Rogers answered no.

"I haven't received, you know, a letter, a text or anything from one footballer who wants to talk about those kinds of issues. I've received phone calls and I've spoken with all my friends here in the UK and around the world that have supported me, but I haven't had one message from a footballer," Rogers said.

Rogers explained that he had quit soccer when he came out because he was terrified that he would be shunned by teammates, but that the response had been overwhelmingly positive.

"And what was it like when you discovered that your anxiety about how people would react had been misplaced?" host Jeremy Paxman asked.

"I mean there's two sides to it. Sometimes people say, 'Do you think footballers make a bigger deal out of it than it is.' Or athletes. And I say, 'No. Definitely not.' That's the reason why they're not coming out, because they hear so many things that scare them. But my mom said to me, 'Have you learned that you should give people a chance, as well? Give people a chance to get to know you.' ... I did learn that lesson from this. You know, to be open with people and give people a chance."

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