WWE Superstar Darren Young appeared on NBC’s “Today Show” Friday morning to talk about coming out as gay during a TMZ interview Wednesday, and said he now has “the best of both worlds” professionally and personally.
“I’m in love,” Young told Today’s Matt Lauer without divulging any other information about the relationship.
Young (real name Fred Rosser) said when TMZ approached him at Los Angeles International Airport Wednesday about whether a gay WWE Superstar would be accepted, he felt it was “the right place at the right time” to come out.
“I’ve been suppressing these feelings for so long in my life,” said Young, who added that he’s happy to have this issue settled as he approaches his 30th birthday.
Young admitted that he was “terrified” in the past about the idea of someone finding out about his sexuality and it damaging his career. Be he added that since his admission he’s had a conversation with WWE Chairman Vince McMahon in which McMahon expressed his support. WWE released a statement Thursday saying it was “proud” of Young for being open about his sexuality.
Young has also since spoken with Jason Collins, the NBA veteran who came out in a May 6 Sports Illustrated cover story.
“He gave me some advice on how to handle this situation,” Young said, adding that Collins was a motivation in being comfortable about coming out.
Young said that his story “goes further” than being gay. He explained how as a young boy he had a speech impediment that caused him to be picked on. He’s been active with WWE’s Be A Star anti-bullying campaign and wants to use this newfound attention to help youngsters going through struggles.
“At the end of the day I want to be a role model,” Young said.
Young currently is one-half of the tag team The Primetime Players. His tag-team partner, Titus O'Neil, expressed his support Thursday by tweeting on his verified account, "I'm VERY PROUD of @DarrenYoungWWE He's been like Family 2Me&My Kids And that won't Change! #ImInFullSupportOfDarren". The tweet included a TwitPic of Young and O'Neil with O'Neil's children.