Mariah Carey Responds to Gay Olympian Who Says Her Music Empowered Him
Kerron Clement revealed how the Butterfly album helped him understand his own sexuality.
Four-time Olympic World Champion Kerron Clement revealed that Mariah Carey's music helped him come to terms with being gay.
In a new feature with Today, the out track star says he knew his sexuality by the age of 11 but was afraid to come out.
“I didn’t know of any other gay people growing up,” said the 35-year-old. “I didn’t know of any gay people in my community. I didn’t know of any one on TV. But I knew that I felt different inside and that those feelings weren’t the same as other boys, so I was afraid and kept it to myself.”
Clement says he found some solace from his sadness and fear in one artist in particular.
“I listened to a lot of Mariah Carey. I related a lot to the lyrics on her Butterfly album, particularly a song called "Outside" that’s about not fitting in. I would listen to it nonstop. I know for her she was singing about her biracial identity, but I related it to how I felt about my sexuality.”
Clement came out in 2019 and is believed to be the first male track and field athlete to come out while actively competing. He's currently training for the upcoming Olympic Trials in June.
The sweet sentiment reached Carey and she responded oh so adorably on Twitter yesterday. "This made my day," said the superstar with a crying emoji, heart emoji, and rainbow emoji.
\u201cThis made my day \ud83d\ude2d\u2764\ufe0f\ud83c\udf08\u201d— Mariah Carey (@Mariah Carey) 1622590384
Clemont later responded to Carey on Instagram. "One day i will meet you," he wrote on his story. "She said it made her day... really!!! You made my whole year lol."