In modern society, being gay is often seen as no big deal, but there are still enough reasons for people to stay in the closet. This is especially true for those in the limelight. If someone is constantly in the public eye, it can be a lot of stress to choose to come out of the closet.
We want to take a look at the people that chose to come out as gay once they had already become famous. These twenty people took the courageous step forward that helps many people in the normal world come out as gay as well. They are the celebrities that came out as a gay person.
It's about time that we took a dive right into the gay celebrities of this world, the ones that opened themselves up to scrutiny just by being who they are in the public eye. Let's take a look!
20 Ellen Page
Despite being outed when she was only eighteen years old by Brett Ratner, Page decided to wait until 2014 to officially come out as gay during a speech at a Human Rights Campaign conference.
She has since married her longtime partner Emma Portner and made numerous efforts to better the lives of those in the LGBT community.
19 Portia De Rossi
In 2010, Rossi revealed that she had been terrified of her lifestyle coming out when she was a young actress. Thankfully, she was able to overcome this worry and is part of one of the most famous gay couples of all time.
Her and Ellen DeGeneres continue to live a happy and fulfilling life together.
18 Jim Parsons
Rather than coming out as gay himself, it was an article in The New York Times that outed Parsons as gay back in 2012. It casually noted that the man was openly gay and had been in a relationship for around ten years.
Good to know that The Big Bang Theory star has found love.
17 Ricky Martin
He had been followed by rumors throughout his entire time in showbiz, but Martin chose not to officially come out of the closet until 2010.
By this time he had made enough of a name for himself to feel that it wouldn't hurt his chances of future work to be openly gay.
16 Jodie Foster
Having worked in Hollywood since a very young age, Foster didn't have much time to come out as gay while not in the public eye.
Like many other celebrities, Foster chooses not to talk about her personal life, meaning that many were speculating about her lifestyle before she came out of the closet.
15 Ellen DeGeneres
Celebrities have to choose their moment to come out as gay carefully. Being a public figure, their best bet is to announce it during a speech.
However, Ellen went another way with it. When she was writing and starring in her own show, she decided to come out as a gay in the final episode!
14 Neil Patrick Harris
While many may know him as the womanizer Barney Stinson, that doesn't change the fact that he has been openly gay since around 2006.
There were various rumors surrounding his lifestyle for a long time, so he chose to confirm the rumors and let the world know that he was a happily gay man!
13 Jane Lynch
In an odd way, this is a woman that refuses to come out. While she let it be known quite quickly once she had become famous that she was a gay woman, she didn't have a grand moment in which she came out of the closet as many other celebrities have.
Good for her if that's how she likes it!
12 Sarah Paulson
Rather than come out hard on one side or the other, Paulson has chosen to keep her options as open as possible. She refuses to be labeled, but until around 2004, she had never openly been in a relationship with a woman.
This then changed with Cherry Jones, who she left in 2009 before moving onto Holland Taylor.
11 Holland Taylor
Many were surprised when they found out that Holland Taylor was seeing Sarah Paulson, but not just because of the age gap between the two.
This is a woman that has rarely spoken about her lifestyle in the past, but she is now out and proud, appearing in public with Sarah Paulson on numerous occasions in the past.
10 Elton John
After originally coming out as bi in 1976 and entering into a supposedly loving marriage with a woman, John then came out as gay in 1988.
He has been with David Furnish for years now, first entering into a Civil Partnership with him in 2005, and eventually marrying him in 2014.
9 Sara Gilbert
After appearing in Roseanne with Johnny Galecki, Sara Gilbert entered into a famous relationship with the young actor.
However, it was during this time that Gilbert realized that she was gay. She has been in a long term relationship with Linda Perry, who she married in 2014.
8 Wanda Sykes
While she has purposefully refused to make a public speech about her lifestyle, she is known to be out of the closet.
Sykes even took part in a skit surrounding the fact that young people use the term gay to insult others, highlighting how seriously she takes this issue.
7 Lily Tomlin
Quite possibly the most private celebrity on this list, Tomlin pretty much refuses to talk openly about her lifestyle.
She is openly married to a woman but doesn't feel that her lifestyle should be a point of interest to her fans or those that may offer her work at some point in the future, and we agree!
6 Sam Smith
In 2014, Smith decided to open up and declare that he was gay. This was largely down to the fact that he wanted the world to know that it was the break up of a relationship that meant he could write his award-winning album.
It was a great way to show many gay people out there that they could do this too.
5 Barry Manilow
This celebrity waited a long time before officially coming out as gay, only recently coming out of the closet despite being in the public eye for a long time.
The reason he gave when asked why he chose to do this was that he didn't want to disappoint his fans, which just shows how backward some people can be!
4 George Takei
While there had been a lot of rumors surrounding this now famous actor during his time on Star Trek, it wasn't until 2005 that he officially revealed he was gay during an interview with Frontier's magazine.
During that interview, he also gave details about the relationship, including that he had been with the man for 18 years.
3 Ian McKellen
It can be difficult to believe there was ever a time when people couldn't be honest about their lifestyle, but this is a man that had to hide who he was for a long time.
Ever since 1988, he has been openly gay and has spent all those years supporting the LGBT community every chance he gets.
2 Sean Hayes
After playing such a high profile role, taking on the character of an incredibly camp man, there were obviously rumors that Sean himself was gay.
It didn't take long before he confirmed that he is a gay man, unlike the actor who played the titular character of Will in Will & Grace.
1 Zachary Quinto
Like many gay celebrities before him, this man decided to come out of the closet when he realized that this could have a positive effect on the LGBT community.
Many believe it isn't enough to keep their lifestyle secret when there are many out there that are being persecuted for not doing so!
Sources - Telegraph, TMZ & Daily Mail