It couldn't have been easy in the past if you were a member of the LGBTQ community and a pro-wrestler. After all, this is a sport that for decades used camp and overtly flamboyant gimmicks just so characters could garner cheap heel heat. It was a dark time, not just for the wrestling community but society on the whole. But not anymore.
With the world changing for the better, and more and more people realizing it's nobodies damn business who you love, these athletes are being more open about their sexuality. And more power to them. So with that in mind, what follows is a look at 10 Wrestlers Who Are Proudly Members of the LGBTQ Community.
10 Rosa Mendes
Coming out as bisexual on a 2014 episode of Total Divas (remember folks, we watch it so you don't have to) the former WWE Diva Search contestant, and current Independent scene wrestler, said that she was "...more into guys" but "...had been with girls before" further explaining "I get emotionally attached to guys when I'm intimate and I'm scared."
She has been in a long term relationship with musician and clothing company owner Bobby Schubenski since 2015 and has a baby girl, Jordan Elizabeth, with him, but there is no doubt that she is still a proud LGBTQ member.
9 Nyla Rose
On February 7th, 2019, Nyla Rose made history when she became the first transgender wrestler to sign a deal with a major wrestling company. Joining up with AEW, the brainchild of The Young Bucks, Cody Rhodes, Kenny Omega, and billionaire backer Shahid Khan, Rose is not just opening doors for others, but kicking them down.
And it didn't take her long to pick up her first feud. Storming to the stage, Nyla The Destroyer confronted Kylie Ray and after the two had to be separated by security it was announced that they would face each other at Double or Nothing.
8 Charlie Morgan
In late 2017, Charlie Morgan did one of the bravest things imaginable. During a Pro Wrestling: EVE event, she publically came out as gay.
Admitting that she was worried and extremely nervous beforehand, she said "One of the lines in the promo was ‘Do you think I’m scared to say it, do you think I’m scared to say I’m gay?’ And then I let the crowd react and I didn’t expect the crowd to react how they did." The current WWE NXT UK star added, “I was really taken aback by the positive response I’ve had since doing the promo."
Openly gay and proud, it wasn't always that way for the Mexican Sensation Cassandro. First starting out as the heel Mister Romano, it would take the urging of his fellow wrestler, Baby Sharon, for him to become his true self and a full-blown exótico.
By embracing this side of his personality, he would find the respect and dignity which he felt had been missing from his life. Explaining "When I was a kid, I thought I was a nobody. I thought I was a reject. And when I became an exótico wrestler, it was like, ‘Wow, I’m home.’ ”
6 Mike Parrow
The “One Man Demolition Machine” Mike Parrow wasn't always so open and proud about his sexuality as he is today. In fact, the Major League Wrestling alumni even went so far as to try and change who he was on a fundamental level, trying conversion therapy, which he now describes as an "...absolute joke".
With the help of his partner Morgan, he started coming out to people. "Their perception of gay men was totally different. So when I tell them, they get shocked, but every time I tell someone it gets easier rather than harder, and I always try to tell people that.”
5 Jack Sexsmith
The owner of PROUD apparel, and PROGRESS and Defiant Wrestling regular, identifies himself as pansexual. He also managed to take The Bruiserweight Pete Dunne to the limit in one of the more underrated matches this sport has ever seen.
He has stated in the past that “As a performer I know I prefer to be the protagonist. And I had to be a good guy… I don’t want the character to be hated. He stands for a lot more than just wrestling." but he is still as loved and respected in his current incarnation as a heel as he was a face.
4 Christopher Saynt
Coming out as gay was the catalyst that kick-started Christopher Saynt's career but it wasn't as plain sailing as it could've been, if truth be told.
It wasn't from anyone he worked with, Saynt himself said that they were all incredibly supportive, but the hate came from those lowest of the low, the scumbag trolls who populate the internet. He received hateful messages leaving him baffled as to how "...some people haven’t managed to progress to ‘live and let live’" but it hasn't deterred him one bit.
"People need to know it’s okay to be who you are"
3 Orlando Jordan
Being openly bisexual in a time where pro-wrestling wasn't exactly known for its subtlety, really didn't help Orlando Jordan's career. Stuck with one terrible gimmick after another, he would only survive for three years in the WWE before heading out to the independents and then onto TNA.
There he would have to deal with, what can only be described, as a predatory character and would only last a year before being released. Since then he has been working the circuit and currently owns two wrestling schools. Sadly it truly is a case of what could've been if he was around in better times.
2 Sonya Devillle
Sonya Deville could kick your ass six ways to Sunday. That's just a fact. And this inner strength, and straight up badassery, played no small part in her coming out during a Tough Enough episode.
As she explains it, "During the preliminary taping of the first premiere episode, they asked me if I was in a relationship. So I said, 'Yeah, I have a girlfriend, but she's not my wife yet'. I got nervous, and they all started smiling. I said, 'Oh my god, I just came out on national television'. And Triple H replied, 'Yeah you did!'.
1 Darren Young
Surely the best coming out party has to go to, the seriously underrated, Darren Young. Asked during an interview with TMZ whether a gay wrestler could ever be a success, he replied "Absolutely, look at me. I'm a WWE superstar and to be honest with you, I'll tell you right now, I'm gay. And I'm happy. I'm very happy."
This was the first time ever that a wrestler signed to a major company had openly admitted to being gay, and was a huge step forward in that regard, it's just such a shame that he never truly got the push his talent deserved.