Coming Out

This Bi Dad Came Out Earlier This Year After Meeting His Soul Mate

After keeping his sexuality a secret for many years, Charlie finally decided to come out in January 2018

Charlie Roberson doesn't have any regrets. Despite knowing he was gay, Charlie married a woman in his twenties and together they had a baby girl. But the marriage didn't last, and in January this year, Charlie finally came out to the world. He's now in a meaningful relationship, and loving life as a dad. Here's Charlie path to fatherhood and why he decided to live his true authentic life.


Charlie and his daughter

"I knew I was bisexual when I was young," said Charlie, "and I told my parents when I was 16." Charlie's parents insisted it was just a phase, and, afraid of what people might think, he decided to keep his sexuality a secret. He went on to marry his ex-wife, and in 2012 they had a daughter.

"It was the best thing that had ever happened to me," said Charlie.

Charlie (back, left), Taylor and Charlie's daughter

When their daughter was a 1 year old, Charlie and his ex-wife decided to call it quits. At the time, Charlie was not out but the couple decided the relationship was no longer working. Unfortunately, the divorce turned did not go smoothly. It took over 2 years for the custody battle to be resolved. Charlie was granted joint custody and now co-parents with his ex-wife.

Charlie and Taylor

Charlie continued life as a single dad for the next couple of years, but by January 2018, he'd decided enough was enough: he wanted to come out as a proud gay dad.

His decision was prompted by someone new who had recently entered his life: his partner Taylor.

"I was tired of keeping it a secret," said Charlie. "Plus, I fell in love with Taylor; he is my soul mate."

The response to Charlie coming out has mostly been very supportive. He finally feels happy and content, and he has some advice for other dads still struggling to come out of the closet:

"Just be you and don't worry about the people who might judge," he said. "Be a great dad first and live your life genuinely, it's too short!"

We couldn't agree more.

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News

Ed Smart, Father of Kidnapping Victim Elizabeth Smart, Comes Out as Gay

In coming his coming out letter, Ed Smart, a Mormon, condemned the church for their "ridicule, shunning, rejection and outright humiliation" of LGBTQ individuals.

In a post on Facebook, Ed Smart, father of kidnapping survivor Elizabeth Smart, came out as gay. He also discussed his strained relationship with his Mormon faith, claiming he felt he didn't feel comfortable living as an openly gay man in a church with a difficult history with respect to its LGBTQ members. He and his wife, Lois, have filed for divorce.

"This is one of the hardest letters I have ever written," he began the letter. "Hard because I am finally acknowledging a part of me that I have struggled with most of my life and never wanted to accept, but I must be true and honest with myself." He went on to acknowledged a new set of challenges facing he and his family as they navigate a divorce and his coming out — in the public eye, no less — but concluded, ultimately, that it's a "huge relief" to be "honest and truthful about my orientation."

He went on to condemn The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for their "ridicule, shunning, rejection and outright humiliation" of LGBTQ individuals. "I didn't want to face the feelings I fought so hard to suppress, and didn't want to reach out and tell those being ostracized that I too am numbered among them. But I cannot do that any longer."

In an interview with the Salt Lake Tribune, Ed Smart further discussed his reasons for coming out now, as a 64-year-old man.

"I mean, I knew that it would probably come out at some point, just because people can't leave things alone. I did anticipate that it would happen at some time, but my intention in writing it was to try to let my friends and family know, you know my extended family ... know where things were. So, you know, I was really concerned about how the rumor mill starts," he told the paper. "I knew that at some point in time, that would come out," he elaborated. "I didn't know when it would come out, and so I would rather have it come out the way that it did versus having some rumors going around, and you know the crazy way things can get twisted."

In 2002, Ed Smart's daughter Elizabeth was abducted at knife point by a married couple from her bedroom in Salt Lake City, Utah. She suffered physical and sexual abuse at the couple's hands, for nine months, until she was finally rescued by police. During the ordeal, papers — including the Salt Lake Tribute — speculated about Ed Smart's sexual orientation based on some fabricated information sold to the paper by tabloids like the National Enquirer. (The Enquirer retracted the story, and the reporters at the Tribute were ultimately fired.)

"I think that in April I started feeling like I needed to prepare something," Smart told the Tribute. "Because during Elizabeth's ordeal, there were things said, and it wasn't what I wanted to say, and I was not going to allow that to happen again."

As to how his family has taken the news, Smart said they've been "very kind" to him. "I think it was very difficult to have this kind of come out of the blue. I don't think any of them knew I was struggling with this, so it was something they were, if you want to call it, blindsided by. I totally get that. They've really been very wonderful."

Congrats to Ed Smart on making the difficult decision to live his truth. Read his full letter here and his interview with the Tribute here.

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