Gay High School Football Player Found Acceptance In His Fellow Teammates After His Parents Shunned Him

A gay high school football player and cheerleader found acceptance in his fellow teammates and school, but sadly, he was violently shunned by his parents after they discovered a love letter he wrote to his first boyfriend.

 

“Despite growing up as a gay person in conservative Texas, I was embraced by my school and teammates on various sports,” Hodges wrote in an essay for Out Sports. “I can’t say the same for my family, my home life or my community.”

After the discovery of a love letter he had written to his first boyfriend as a freshman at Anahuac High School, his parents lashed out at the teen.

“As soon as I walked into the house,” Hodges wrote, “my dad started yelling at me and saying many hurtful things that are just too hard to even type. My mom was screaming as well, saying it was ‘my choice’ to be that way. As she saying this, she grabbed my hand and said just as it would also be my choice to not let her burn my hand on the hot stove as she was pressing it closer and closer.”

He made the decision to come out to his classmates following the incident with his parents.

I remember the first teacher I told was my biology teacher, Mrs. Broomas. We had a sex-ed quiz and one of the questions asked, “How could you prevent getting a girl pregnant while having intercourse?” My reply was, “I’m GAY so I don’t have to worry about that.”

As she got to my paper she broke out laughing and just smiled at me. She then asked if she could read it to the class, and with confidence I told her she could. When she did, all the kids laughed and gave me a hug afterward and told me no matter what that they would always be my friends and still support me. Everyone in that class was either on my cross-country team or on my football team.

After that, the whole school found out and word traveled to all my teammates in athletics. Each of them made sure I still felt welcome with them and that we were all a family with the same goal, to win at whatever sport we were playing.

During my high school career, I played football, ran cross-country, did powerlifting, played golf and did track and field. Football was fun but cross-country had its special significance since running gave me time to think and de-stress from what people thought about me being gay.

Hodges also joined the school’s drill team and would perform with his squad during halftime before going back out on the field to play ball.

Hodges will start his sophomore year at the University of Houston this fall.

You can read Hodges’ coming out story at Out Sports, here.