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Former Boybander George Shelley Talks About Hiding His Sexuality

Former Boybander George Shelley Talks About Hiding His Sexuality

Former Boybander George Shelley Talks About Hiding His Sexuality

"I don’t want to waste one day. I don’t want to lie and pretend I’m somebody I’m not."

byraffy

In an interview with Sir Ian McKellan for the November 2018 cover story of the UK's Gay Times magazine, pop singer George Shelley opened up about having to hide his sexuality during his days of being a member of the boyband Union J. 

"People knew, and then I started going out, Jaymi would take me to these clubs, and people would see me with these guys," Shelley told Gay Times, recounting how he used to party at gay clubs with fellow gay bandmember Jaymi Hensley before coming out. "I’d be kissing these guys on nights out like any other 20-year-old would do when you’re experimenting, and that’s absolutely okay. But because of the situation I was in—in the public eye selling records aimed at young girls—I feel like I was made to believe, and made to think, because of the things I was being told and the way I was conditioned, that it would’ve jeopardised the band’s career. And in turn jeopardise my own career."

He then recalled how the painful loss of his sister helped him come to terms with being gay. 

"To be honest I think part of it, losing my sister was the most awful thing that has ever happened to me and it really put into perspective how short life is, and how much you have to embrace who you are as a person. You have to embrace what makes you, you," the singer, who previously came out and identified as bisexual, said. "I’d hate to have any regrets in the future, and to look back and be like, why didn’t you just enjoy it while it was there?"

He continued: 

"My sister was all about being who she was. She was very passionate about what she did, and she knew exactly who she was and what she wanted in life. I guess I’ve taken that and applied it to my own life."

“I don’t want to waste one day. I don’t want to lie and pretend I’m somebody I’m not."

Read the full Gay Times interview here

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Raffy Ermac

Digital Director, Out.com

Raffy is a Los Angeles-based writer, editor, video creator, critic, and digital director of Out Magazine. The former editor-in-chief of PRIDE, he is also a die-hard Rihanna and Sailor Moon stan who loves to write about all things pop culture, entertainment, and identities. Follow him on Instagram (@raffyermac) and Twitter (@byraffy), and subscribe to his YouTube channel

Raffy is a Los Angeles-based writer, editor, video creator, critic, and digital director of Out Magazine. The former editor-in-chief of PRIDE, he is also a die-hard Rihanna and Sailor Moon stan who loves to write about all things pop culture, entertainment, and identities. Follow him on Instagram (@raffyermac) and Twitter (@byraffy), and subscribe to his YouTube channel