Photo Credit: Colton Underwood/Instagram

Shocking the world this morning was Bachelor star Colton Underwood this morning on Good Morning America came out of the closet. Usually coming out isn’t that big of a deal in 2021 unless you’re say, Lil Nas X twerking on the devil’s lap, but there’s a bit of a difference with Underwood. He was on one of the country’s biggest reality contestant shows as someone women were competing to be with. So here we are almost back to the early 2000s with the fear of the DL men narrative being a topic of discussion.

As for the interview, he told Robin Roberts in the pre-taped interview, “I’ve ran from myself for a long time. I’ve hated myself for a long time. And I’m gay. And I came to terms with that earlier this year and have been processing it. And the next step in all of this was sort of letting people know.” As for moving forward in his life, he said, “I’m still nervous, but yeah,” he continued. “It’s been a journey for sure.”

He partially credits the pandemic that he said lead many to “look at themselves in the mirror and figure out who they are and what they’ve been running from or what they’ve been putting off in their lives.” Robins, who is openly gay herself said she could “see the joy” and “see the relief” in Underwood speaking to him. He in turn said he was “emotional in, like such a good, happy, positive way,” and is “the happiest and healthiest” he’s ever been.

Underwood says he had a “wake-up call” when he realized he “would’ve rather died” than say he’s gay. “There was a moment in L.A. that I woke up and I didn’t think I was gonna wake up. I didn’t have the intentions of waking up. And I did,” he recalled, noting this moment — and other “suicidal thoughts” — led him to “take back control” of his life.

And regarding the women Roberts asked how he felt about them feeling he mislead them during his time on The Bachelor, he said he “would understand why they think that way.”

“I’ve thought a lot about this too, of, ‘Do I regret being the Bachelor and do I regret handling it the way that I did?’ I do,” he said. “I do think I could’ve handled it better, I’ll say that.”

He expressed regret for dragging the women on the Bachelor into what he called “my own mess of figuring out who I was.” When he was named The Bachelor, he said he prayed to God “thanking him for making me straight,’ he said. He thought it would finally bring him the wife and kids he wanted.

As someone who stared having feelings towards men at 6, he said “I used to wake up in the morning and pray for him to take the gay away. I used to pray for him to change me.” And of all his issues with coming out, he says his family simply wishes he had told them sooner.

“And when I hear that, I wish I would have had faith in my friends and my family a little bit more,” he said. “The only reason I’m sitting down with you today is because I have the love and the support of my friends and my family.”

This reminds me of the reaction to Caitlyn Jenner’s coming out and transitioning from being Bruce Jenner. Many felt he led a misleading life and strung his wife and children along. As someone who had a pretty dramatic and traumatic coming out story of my own, or dragging out as I call it, I know there is simply no correct time and way to do it. The world may be more accepting but many are not and society isn’t quite as open to the LGBT community as many would have you to think. And by the time those who have dated both sexes do come out, they said they honestly tried to go the straight and narrow, pun intended.

And to the first reporting of this story I saw today. Conservative pundit Scottie Nelle-Hughes was criticizing him on Twitter for misleading women. This is a woman who sued FoxNews accusing a host of theirs, Charles Payne raped her. He admitted to a consensual relationship with her, one everyone knew about and this was the direction she chose to go in to protect her marriage. Meanwhile, the woman she was misleading was his wife who was laying at home with cancer. So for her of all people to talk about misleading others… is an absolute no. Glass houses, people… don’t throw stones from them.

In other Underwood news, he’s now working on a reality series about his new life with Netflix. In a similar vein as I Am Cait, there aren’t many details on the project but a newly out of the closet 29 year old ex-professional football player and national heart-throb should be more than interesting to watch both for fans and detractors alike.