Raymond Gutierrez is hopeful that his coming out as gay will "be an example to the next generation who are struggling, who are feeling suppressed to take time in finding themselves and being happy with themselves."
"I wanna empower those people. I wanna tell them that, 'You're not alone. I was going through the same things," he told MEGA Entertainment, describing sexuality as only one aspect of one's life. "It doesn’t define who you are."
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Gutierrez became a hot topic on social media yesterday, August 1, when he officially shared he is part of the LGBTQIA+ community.
"I'm here to formally say that I am a proud member of the LGBTQ community. And it feels great saying that publicly because I am," he declared.
He said that coming to terms with his sexuality was not easy. "I had my brother who was so similar to me but so different in so many ways. But he never had to explain his sexuality, so why should I?"
Being called "the baklang kapatid ni Richard" while he was growing up eventually took a toll on his mental health. "I can literally hear them," he said. “That kind of became why I got depressed and why I gained so much weight. I literally became self-destructive."
On top of that, he joined the entertainment industry—where “being gay is really not accepted in a lot of these communities,” as he put it—at 19 years old. For such reasons, he decided to keep it a secret.
"I don't think I told anybody. I was stuck with myself for so long hating myself. I didn't like myself for a long time," he said, adding that he later realized that “the best thing that you can really offer your family is to be yourself.”
His nearest and dearest have given him support after his public declaration. As he shared his coming out story on Instagram, his relatives like Ruffa Gutierrez and Sarah Lahbati as well as friends like Liz Uy, Georgina Wilson, and Nicole Andersson, among others, were quick to send him some love in the comments section.
Article thumbnails from @mond on Instagram