Robin Roberts’ life has served as an inspiration to millions over the years, especially because of her public battle with cancer. But Roberts became even more of an inspiration last year when she came out as gay and revealed her long-term relationship to her girlfriend, Amber Laign. Recently, Roberts opened up about the impact of her coming out story and says she was brought to tears when she heard about how her coming out affected one young man’s life.
During a recent interview on CNN’s “Reliable Sources,” via Mediaite, Roberts’ explained that a young gay man approached CBS’ Gayle King and told her how Roberts’ coming out story helped him repair his relationship with his disapproving mother.
“Somebody came up to her — and this catches me,” Roberts said while choking up. “A young man whose mother was having a tough time and said, ‘if it’s OK for Robin, it’s OK for my son.’”
“We were pleasantly surprised that there was a big shrug of the shoulders,” Roberts said of the reaction to her coming out. “So many people have come up to me — and it wasn’t even a part of the story I was really thinking about, but the number of young people that said they can now have a conversation with their parents … I find it surprising that somebody in your family that doesn’t even know me, but for whatever reason it helps you understand your own family member’s orientation, wow. I’ve been so busy fighting for my life that I didn’t think about that aspect of the story, but I’m very grateful that it is creating dialogue for families.”
And that, besides the freedom of living your truth, is the greatest reward that Roberts could’ve gained for coming out. And it’s great that others who are following in her footsteps will do the same for others struggling with their sexuality and identity. – nicholas robinson