One of Singapore’s leading athletes has decided to come out of the closet ahead of the country’s annual Pride Event.
Theresa Goh, 30, a paralympic medallist was born with spina bifida and gets around with a wheelchair.
Goh was chosen as public ambassador for Singapore’s huge Pink Dot pride event in July. She said it ‘feels like the right time’ to come out.
‘I felt like I had to use that attention for a bigger message,’ Goh told the Straits Times.
‘I didn’t want to just make it about sports and me and disability.’
Goh said the lack of visibility of LGBTI in Singapore media and television left her unsure of her own sexuality.
‘When I looked in the papers, television or movies, I never saw anyone on a wheelchair, let alone someone on a wheelchair who is gay,’ she said.
The support of her friends and parents helped Goh comes to terms with her sexuality and helped her to feel safe coming out.
‘In the end, I know no matter what happens, I have the important people in my life who care, are supportive, and who will be there if I need them, so no matter what happens, I feel I will be okay,’ she said.
‘My parents are amazing. From then on, I knew that I was safe, that I’m okay. It helped a lot once I had their backing. That’s something that a lot of people may not be lucky enough to have.’
Goh is in a relationship and said it was important for her to live as her true self.
She came out to her fellow Paralympic swimmer Yip Pin Xiu 10 years ago.
‘I just felt that I couldn’t hide it from her any more. It helped to make our friendship stronger because then I wasn’t hiding anything from her any more,’ she said.