Adam Rippon | First Openly Gay Winter Olympic Athlete For Team USA Shares His Story

Adam Rippon | First Openly Gay Winter Olympic Athlete For Team USA Shares His Story

No matter what kind of person you are, it takes courage to really be yourself. When I finally shed that doubt and stopped worrying about what I feared other people would think of me. I was having, you know, the best experiences of my life. Hi, everyone, Meryl Davis here for the Olympic Channel with Olympic medalist, cultural icon and my friend most importantly. Oh Thanks. Adam Rippon. We’re in your home. So thank you for having me here. I had to clean up a lot before you got here. You know, you are an Olympic medalist. So can you talk a little bit about what success really meant to you both in PyeongChang and beyond? Wasn’t like the best of the best and not a world champion, but I found myself being really proud of what I had done and realized that success is so personal. When I was going to the Olympics, I told myself that my number one goal was to represent myself to the best of my ability. And that meant skating the best I absolutely could. And it also meant being honest and showing who I was. And I thought that, you know, I would answer any question that I got, honestly, whether it was how are you feeling? I would say, yeah, I’m pretty sure I’m going to have diarrhea. And you tackled some pretty big issues throughout the course of the games, which I think a lot of athletes tend to shy away from. I just felt like in this day and age that we live in with social media, your voice is and can be so powerful that what’s the point of having one if you don’t use it? Love that, amazing! Well, your experience on top of the skating in PyeongChang being the first out athlete for Team USA. What did that experience mean to you? So I got to share this honor with also like Gus Kenworthy, Gus and I did not meet until the night of the opening ceremonies in the holding tent for all the athletes. It’s somebody who I’ve never met before, somebody who does not do the same thing I do. But on some level, I so understand things that he’s thought and things that he has gone through. And when we met in that tent, it felt like we had known each other for ever. You know, we were getting to walk in and we kind of looked at each other and he turned to me and he said, do you want to walk in together? And in that moment, it just felt so much bigger than me. I think the two of us walking in together was almost a political act. It felt like something that I would have never thought was possible 10 or 15 years earlier. And I remember thinking like if 10 year old Adam saw this, maybe he wouldn’t have felt so uncomfortable for 20 years. I felt really grateful to be part of that. I don’t know how aware you were necessarily going into PyeongChang. What kind of icon you would be for the LGBT community. I was able to do what a lot of people before me were not able to do without repercussions. What I felt like was something that I was selfishly doing for myself was actually a result of a lot of work other people have done it before me so that somebody who’s like me, who’s got a big mouth, can go to the Olympics and be embraced by so many different kinds of people. I finished reading your book, which is insanely inspiring and powerful and emotional. People, as they read the book, will sort of understand these really challenging moments. But looking back on the moments where whether money was tight or just balancing all the difficulty of making your dreams a reality. Do you have any piece of advice you would give yourself that? I think back to that time, a lot of when things were really challenging. When I really, you know, was living in my coach’s basement, I had to choose between paying for ice time or like getting groceries. The only thing I would say to myself then is don’t forget this feeling, because in those moments are when I had my biggest breakthroughs and if there was anything I could say to that person, I’d be like, sorry. You’ll have more money later. But just like focus. Do you ever pinch yourself and just think like, I can’t believe this is my life now? No. No. Because I can believe it. I’m incredibly grateful to have met so many people who are so influential, and I think that it’s helped me and inspired me to kind of take the same path as people like them. I think that’s why you’ve been so successful. Is having that. Raving success. Actually a raving success. Yeah. Who would play you in a movie about your life? I haven’t thought about this because it needs to be the right person. I think Margot Robbie would do a good job. She would. So she can play anything she can. Yeah. And you can play Tonya Harding. You can play anything. Here’s my only qualification. Somebody young and hot. You can play yourself. I was talking about myself. Yeah, it’s a vlog. I like it. Margot Robbie, maybe she’s in it and I haven’t called her back. Well I can’t wait to watch it, whoever plays you. Definitely gonna watch it. And what do you want to do next? Is there one direction you’re really excited to go in? I think right now, in this time of my life and you’re like, who am I like athlete? You’re like, no, I want to make people laugh because it brings me a lot of joy. And in a world and things can feel so crazy. It’s nice to be able to give an escape to different people. Excuse me. Do you have any intention on, you know, maintaining your involvement in that competitive figure skating world? I feel at home when I’m on the ice, it’s gone from being my job to being almost my place of therapy. So I have done choreography for other skaters this year. Skating changed my life. So to be able to still be a part of that is important to me. Thank you so much for your time. I always love getting to spend time with you. You’re doing such wonderful things for not just the figure skating community, but American culture. I thought American culture needed a little bit of a boost. Right. And you, I think, are doing wonderful thing. Thank you Adam. Love you. Love you. This video was a collab between me and the Olympic Channel. Make sure you watch the other video right here and there’s something else to click here. Is there? I dunno.

26 Replies to “Adam Rippon | First Openly Gay Winter Olympic Athlete For Team USA Shares His Story”

  1. Not gonna lie, it's kind of disappointing that he's the only openly gay figure skater. More importantly, one of just two openly gay Olympians at Pyeongchang. It's mathematically impossible for there to only be two LGBT Olympians out of thousands.

  2. That's so crazy that he's the first one! I would have thought this has happened many times by now. :O Good on him for being honest and good luck to him with his performances! 🙂

  3. I remember watching him when i was 14, Now 18. He has inspired me so much & I'm thankful i got into figure skating because i met someone so awesome ❤

  4. 저 평창올림픽에서 잘 봤어요
    작은것들을 위한시 올린 것도 보고
    너무 대단해요
    평창에서 좋은 기억이 많았음 좋겠어요!

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