Neon Trees’ Tyler Glenn came out earlier this week, and now writes response to the many fans and critics who said they already knew that he was gay.
The singer, who was raised Mormon, openly talked about his sexuality in an interview with Rolling Stone saying, “I had my crushes on guys throughout high school, but it was never an overwhelming thing until my 20s.”
Many praised the singer for having the courage to come out, while others were critical. In his open letter, which he posted on Facebook, Glenn explains how he doesn’t think that he is special for being a gay man, and that “all I want is to be honest” and to encourage people to do the same.
Read Glenn’s letter below,
I don’t think I’m special for being a gay man. That’s not why I came out. I didn’t come out so all of you could say “i knew it” based on the clothes I wear or the way I dance. I never even thought I’d have to come out. I’d be the 50 yr old living with dogs hiding my relationships living on a beach somewhere. Maybe then I’d be comfortable with it. But it was last summer, writing songs for the new album, being so fed up with “hiding” and being so ready to be “free” that I poured my heart out into music more than I’d ever had before. Music indeed was my first love. Not a boy. It was music that I had always had a torrid love affair with. I felt I owed him, the music, or her, the song. I had to be honest with that relationship.
It was the moment I let myself write about the years spent in falling for my straight friend or the song I let myself write about thinking it was ok to be alone forever because it was better than explaining myself. It was those truths that came out before I decided to. You can’t hide away forever. I don’t think I was even trying. But music never let me lie. Something always would come out in the songs.
So now you know what you may have always assumed. Good for you. How does it feel? Do you want a “gaydar” award? Do you want to be pat on the back because you can “spot them”?
It is not news. It is not meant to be salacious. Until you know what it’s like to hide, to keep away true happiness out of fear. That’s when you truly understand what it’s like. It’s not about coming out to wave a flag in another’s face. At least it’s not for me. For me its about finding the purist of peace. The absolute settling of my soul. The clearest vision of the road I want to take.
I’m 30. I don’t want to die anymore. I want to really live. Honestly, and fully. What an amazing place to be. For me it was a place I never cared about. Now all I want is to be honest.
That’s what this whole “coming out” thing is for me. It’s been quite a real and beautiful day to have so much compassion and love coming from strangers, fans that have been there since the beginning, new fans, family, friends. For someone like me, the eternal self deprecator, i just want to say thank you.
I guess the last thing I want to say tonight and for now is if you’re like me, a wanderer, a questioner, a soul searcher, a dreamer, or misunderstood for any reason at all: Come out.
Come out as a wanderer. Come out as a questioner. One day it wont matter. But it still does. Come out as YOU. That’s all I really can say. That’s what i’d say to me at 21, the scared return Mormon missionary who knew this part of himself but loved God too. You can do both. Don’t let anyone tell you can’t.
All my love and hope, and for now, back to the music.
XO Your friend, Tyler.
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