YouTuber and BBC presenter Dan Howell has come out.
The 28-year-old British Internet personality shared the news with his more than six million subscribers with a 45-minute video titled “Basically I’m Gay.”
“Spoiler alert: I’m not straight,” Howell begins. “We live in a heteronormative world … which means people are presumed to be straight. If you’re not, then at some point you have to ‘come out’.”
Howell says he feels the term “queer” applies more to his identity but he is comfortable using the word “gay.”
“Whatever heterosexual is, I ain’t it,” Howell says. “Really, if you ask me, I don’t think anyone is totally straight. I think there’s a lot of social and emotional issues getting in the way of yet-to-be-understood feelings of attraction that can be very flexible. Am I totally gay? No.”
Howell also hinted at his relationship with fellow YouTuber and frequent collaborator Phil Lester.
“Obviously we were more than friends, but it was more than just romantic,” Howell says. “This is someone who genuinely liked me. I trusted them. And for the first time since I was a tiny child I actually felt safe…we are real best friends. Companions through life. Like, actual soul mate.”
Howell shared a message of encouragement to his viewers who haven’t come out yet.
“To anyone watching this that isn’t out, it’s OK,” he adds. “You’re OK. You were born this way. It’s right. And anyone that has a problem with it is wrong.”