Home Blog National Coming Out Day: 10 celebrities who came out in 2023 (so far) – NBC News

National Coming Out Day: 10 celebrities who came out in 2023 (so far) – NBC News

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National Coming Out Day has been observed annually on Oct. 11 since 1988. Founded by psychologist Robert Eichberg and activist Jean O’Leary, the day is meant to celebrate and promote the increased visibility of the LGBTQ community. 
“Most people think they don’t know anyone gay or lesbian, and in fact everybody does. It is imperative that we come out and let people know who we are and disabuse them of their fears and stereotypes,” Eichberg said in a 1993 interview, according to his Associated Press obituary
The date of this annual celebration was chosen to mark the anniversary of the 1987 National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights, which drew hundreds of thousands of people to the nation’s capital.
In honor of National Coming Out Day 2023, here are just some of the many notable LGBTQ coming-out stories so far this year.
“Stranger Things” star Noah Schnapp came out as gay in a TikTok video posted in January. In a written message that appeared on the video, the 19-year-old actor revealed that when he “finally told my friends and family I was gay after being scared in the closet for 18 years,” their response was simply: “We know.”
“The Last of Us” star Bella Ramsey came out as gender-fluid in an interview published in The New York Times in January. The actor, who first rose to fame in HBO’s hit series “Game of Thrones,” told the paper that her “gender has always been very fluid” and said if she sees “nonbinary” as an option on a form, she will tick it. However, she added, “Being gendered isn’t something that I particularly like, but in terms of pronouns, I really couldn’t care less.”
Czech Republic soccer player Jakub Jankto came out as gay in a video shared on social media in February. “I am homosexual, and I no longer want to hide myself,” he said in the video, which has nearly 18 million views on X, formerly known as Twitter.
Sparta Prague, the professional club Jankto was playing for at the time, retweeted the video, saying, “You have our support. Live your life, Jakube. Nothing else matters.”
Comedian and actor Mo’Nique came out as queer in her Netflix comedy special, “My Name Is Mo’Nique,” which debuted in April. She told a tearful story about how she never came out to her grandmother due to her grandmother’s tense relationship with Mo’Nique’s Uncle Tina, who was assigned female at birth but presented masculine, according to the Gay Times. Later in the special, Mo’Nique revealed that she came out to her husband, Sidney Hicks: “I said, ‘Daddy, I want to be with another woman sexually.’ And he look at me, so beautifully and so patient and so loving, and said, ‘B—-, me too.’”
Former “RuPaul’s Drag Race”contestant Adore Delano came out as transgender in July. In a video shared with her millions of Instagram followers, Delano said she initially came out as trans when she was a teenager but went back in the closet when she competed on “American Idol” in 2008.
Japanese pop star Shinjiro Atae came out as gay at a fan event in Tokyo in July. “For years, I struggled to accept a part of myself … But now after all I have been through, I finally have the courage to open up to you about something,” he told his fans, according to the AP. “I am a gay man.”
Atae, who is now based in Los Angeles, performed for 15 years in the popular group AAA before taking a break in 2020. 
Former “Bachelorette” star and Denver Broncos cheerleader Gabby Windey revealed that she’s in a relationship with writer and comedian Robby Hoffman. In an Instagram post shared in August, Windey included several photos of herself and Hoffman and cheekily wrote, “Told you I’m a girls girl!!” 
“Let’s Make a Deal” host Wayne Brady came out as pansexual in an interview with People magazine that was published in August. LGBTQ media advocacy group GLAAD defines pansexual as a descriptor for someone “who has the capacity to form enduring physical, romantic, and/ or emotional attractions to any person, regardless of gender identity.”
“Sex Education” star Ncuti Gatwa came out publicly as queer in an interview with Elle UK published in August. Gatwa, who played one of the Kens in this summer’s wildly popular “Barbie” blockbuster, shared a touching story about meeting “another queer Rwandan person” at Manchester Pride several years ago. At the time, he told the magazine, “I thought I was the only one in the world.”
“Heartstopper” star Joe Locke plays an openly gay teenager who faces bullying for who he is in the popular coming-of-age series based on Alice Oseman’s graphic novels, but Locke didn’t publicly discuss his sexuality until August.
“People have assumed and written it,” he told Teen Vogue of his sexuality, “and I haven’t ever corrected anyone because I haven’t felt the need to. But I’ve never specifically stated my sexuality.”
He told the magazine that he can’t recall when he first knew he was gay, but that he’s been openly gay since he was about 12.
Brooke Sopelsa is the editorial director of NBC Out, NBC News’ LGBTQ digital destination. 
Jo Yurcaba is a reporter for NBC Out.
© 2023 NBC UNIVERSAL

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