It has been quite the newsworthy summer for gay women in American soccer. Star midfielder Megan Rapinoe came out as a lesbian back in July and just this week openly gay USWNT head coach Pia Sundhage, who led the U.S. women to Gold at the London Olympics, announced she would be leaving the team in order to coach for her home country of Sweden. Now, Olympic alternate Lori Lindsey (pictured right) tells Autostraddle that she, too, is a lesbian.
The “very, very newly single” Lindsey tells AS she has not really faced any discrimination as a gay athlete. Still, she understands the importance of being open as a role model for young women.
“A lot of people would push me and say, ‘Lori, you should contact people, you should come out. It's important. Every LGBTQ person should be out and proud. That is so important for our community.’ And I agree wholeheartedly with that,” she says.
Lindsey’s mom is also a lesbian and has been with her partner for 25 years, according to AS. Lindsey says that even as a young girl she understood the importance of queer fans in women’s sports. “ I remember growing up and being with all of my mom's lesbian friends and going to women's basketball games in Indiana. I was like, ‘These are the best fans!’” she says. She adds that she appreciates the impact of that demographic to the success of women’s soccer and thinks marketing towards lesbians would be a positive thing for the sport.
Still, with the Americans riding the high of a recent gold medal win, she is embracing the entire fan base. “I think 25- to 55-year-old men are huge into women's soccer, and they can be some of our biggest fans as well. So I think it's about getting the word out there and getting people excited and understanding what the league is all about,” she says.
Lindsey says she hopes to join the USWNT on its victory tour this fall. In the meantime, Lindsey likes Autostraddle’s idea of a dating YouTube video with good friend Megan Rapinoe as a judge. “I definitely have to feel the vibe a little bit. That's why it'd be good to call in Megan and she can decide.” In the meantime, she says, “If you know any bachelorettes, let me know.” We’ll be sure to do that!
Image via Getty.
Read the full interview on Autostraddle.