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26th Jul 2021

Tom Daley hopes his performance will inspire LGBT people to realise “you can achieve anything”

Kieran Galpin


Daley has a message for LGBTQ youth

Tom Daley finally acquired the gold alongside teammate Matty Lee, bringing his diving career full circle. Having fought for this moment since his first appearance on the world stage in 2008’s Beijing games. Rather than take the moment to celebrate himself, Daley paid tribute to the LGBTQ+ community.

“There are more openly out LGBT athletes at this Olympic games than any other Olympic games previously,” he says post-dive.

“I came out in 2013, December 2013, and when I was younger I felt alone and different, and didn’t fit in.

“I hope that any young LGBT person out there can see that no matter how alone you feel right now, you are not alone, and that you can achieve anything.

“There is a whole lot of your chosen family out here to support you,” he says, touching on an idea very close to the hearts of many LGBTQ people. A chosen family is a set of people not related by blood, and yet, they are some of the closest people in your life. It is often adopted by Queer people who are too often sidelined by their own blood relatives.

“I feel incredibly proud to say I am a gay man, and also an Olympic champion.

“I feel very empowered by that because when I was younger I didn’t think I was going to achieve anything because of who I was,” he concludes, as teammate Matty Lee nods along in support.

With over 12m views, Tom Daley’s coming out video dominated headlines.

“I guess it has always been in the back of my head I might be gay, but you never know,” he told the Guardian in 2015.

“I’d been in relationships with girls where I’d had sexual feelings, but it became so much more intense when I met Lance. I thought, ‘Whoa, this is weird. Why am I having these feelings for somebody?'”

“It freaked me a little bit initially, but then it was like, ‘OK, this makes sense’. Lots of things started to make sense.”