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Retired British Olympic swimmer Mark Foster on life out of the closet: ‘It’s nice wherever I go to not worry what I say and do’

British swimmer Mark Foster represented Great Britain in the Olympics and world championships, and swam for England in the Commonwealth Games. The former world champion and won multiple medals in international competition during his long career competing primarily in butterfly and freestyle at 50 meters. Foster retired from swimming in 2008 and last fall came out publicly as a gay man. He talked to Gay Star News in recent days about life since then: . I fell in love when I was 21; I had someone who looked after me. It was a love thing. I felt so comfortable at home, that protected me. So my own self, I didn’t have a dark story going on in the background.

‘I’ve had two partners. One for 19 years, current one for seven years. So, to friends and family – let’s say I did the big bit first. Telling my sisters, telling my dad. But I always found I had my own life, and my work life, which was sport.

‘I suppose being in the public eye and standing on a block and being very vulnerable, from a very early age I got used to hiding stuff, and it became a secret. The secret got bigger.’.

FILE UNDER: Coming Out


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