Michael Sam has stepped away from football citing mental issues. What did he think would happen if he put “all” of his business out about his sexuality in the street. He was never referred to as a football player in articles. Every article that was written started with “Michael Sam the first openly gay football player.”
Michael Sam allowed his sexuality to define him instead of letting his abilities as a football player speak on the field. I understand that he felt the need not to be one of the “boys” in the locker room so he wanted to let the “world” know that he is gay. For any other gay athlete who is considering telling the world that you’re gay before you have a signed contract with a professional team, DON’T say anything. Besides, it’s not necessary and it’s nobody’s business what your sexual orientation is. Live your life, people that are heterosexual do not announce to the world what their sexual orientation is.
Therefore, people with different lifestyles should not feel pressured to announce their lifestyle to the world. His teammates in Canada started grumbling that he was receiving preferential treatment and they were becoming resentful. This was bound to happen on any team because the media made his sexuality more of a story than it should have been.
ESPN awarded him the Arthur Ashe bravery award. What is brave about announcing what your sexual preference is? Nobody cares and the media has to stop blowing these kind of announcements out of proportion. The average person could care less about who someone has in his/her bedroom and if he’s a football player all we care about is whether or not he can play the game.
It is unfortunate for Michael Sam that this happened to him and I hope he finds happiness and healing. He is young and in a very difficult position so hopefully he has a plan B. It will be important for him to focus on living a normal life and dealing with the demons that come with fame. This young man did not receive proper counseling about what was best for his future. It would have made more sense to live his life, play football and find out he has the skills to play on the professional level. Instead, he was ill advised to tell the world about his sexual preference and now he is left picking up the pieces.