Yusaf Mack “I’m gay. I’m tired of holding it in”
Even though I was first to publish the Yusaf Mack hardcore video following his very public dust up, for this just-retired boxer and father of ten, his world has already collapsed. Yesterday, a hasty early interview with TMZ surfaced where he didn’t answer questions, denied the allegations again while saying he was writing a book about something he was claiming to have no memory of.
Yusaf Mack initially tried to explain that a “women loving whore monger” like he was only seen sucking two cocks and getting pounded face down because he was “drugged.” The production company pushed back with litigious threats and Yusaf admitted to being bi-sexual and his participation was entirely consensual in what I described as a rather thoughtfully written mea culpa. I was premature in that description. The real mea culpa came last night in the form of an interview with Fox 29 Philadelphia.
“I’m gay. I’m tired of holding it in, it is what it is. I live my life. I’m gay,” Mack explained.
He says he’s known the truth about who he is for about eight years now.
“It was all a lie,” Mack responded, “To try to cover myself up.”
Once the tape became public, Mack said two things entered his mind: how he would explain it to his children, and suicide.
“I was hurt. Like to myself. Then I think about my children, like how am I gonna explain this to my children,” Mack said, “I called a couple of my friends and told them ‘I’m thinking about killing myself.'”
While Mack says he no longer wants to kill himself, and that he’s free and happy, but the backlash from the video was not yet over for him.
Before the video Mack was previously engaged to marry a woman he had been with for five years. He says the two of them were good to each other, but for him, it was a lie. Mack went and told her the truth, and apologized for any pain he had caused her or their children.
Coming out to a woman he was going to marry was tough, but Mack admits that the toughest conversation he’s had in the weeks since the tape was revealed was the one he had with his oldest daughter.
“Kill yourself,” his daughter said, “You embarrass us.”
Mack could say nothing back, and could only break down in tears, and tell her, “You’re right,” before hanging up.
“The truth is I’m sorry. You don’t like me or love me, regardless I’m still me. When you see me on the streets, I’m still Yusaf Mack.”
Mack says he and his former fiancé are still friends, and his other children are supporting him.
Sure, it’s easy to roll your eyes with some variation of “Well, DUH!!!” as your thought bubble. For most of us, we have come out a long time ago. But I still remember the fear of being “exposed” and the bile it churned up in my then still-closeted stomach. And I didn’t have to ten children and the world of professional boxing to come clean to. And so to Yusaf Mack, I saw well done.
Just like silver medal Olympian Gus Kenworthy and college football player Mason Darrow, every time someone who doesn’t fit the conventional “gay stereotype” comes out, they make it easier for the rest of those that do.
Yusaf Mack, for the community come form and our community you are not a part of, thank you!
If you are struggling with coming out or know someone who is, there are excellent resources available:
[“Coming Out As You” from the Trevor Project]
[Coming Out Support from The LGBT Foundation]
[The Coming Out Resource Center from the Human Rights Campaign]