Peter Caruth becomes the first male hockey player in Ireland to come out as gay • GCN

Content Warning: Contains descriptions of suicide.

Peter Caruth has released a personal statement on Instagram opening up about his coming out experience as a gay man. In doing so, he becomes the first international male hockey player to speak out about his queer sexuality.

Caruth played for Ireland 142 times and was part of the Irish team that won bronze at the European Nations Hockey Championship in 2015. He also won club silverware with Monkstown and Annadale. In addition, the hockey player participated in the Rio Olympics in 2016.

Peter Caruth has revealed that he struggled with an undiagnosed OCD anxiety disorder during his teenage years. But it was in Spain in preparation for the Rio Olympics that Caruth suffered the most with his mental health.

After a suicide attempt that took place in the training camp in Spain, he recalls: “I went to see another physio here [in Dublin] who said there was definitely something else going on. He was a more spiritual man – I was like ‘Nah’ but deep down I knew he was onto me! He worked on me – I almost didn’t come back to him after that because of it.

Caruth explains that he comes from a religious family and is an athlete in a sport with no openly gay players before him. So for him, coming out was never something he thought was possible.

” I have known [sic] that I’ve been gay since my early teens and I think now is a good time to tell everyone,” the Olympian said.

It was when his best friend Peter Whan approached him and told him it was okay if he was gay that he decided to come out.

“In the end my parents were upset that I held him back for so long, no wonder you went through it all to get to this. I was annoyed at myself I didn’t do it sooner but at least I did. That’s what needs to happen more, so let’s get it out there and we’ll be fine. Caruth said during an interview with the Irish Examiner.

In his statement, he says, “The response since coming out has been overwhelmingly positive and I’ve had other male athletes come up to me and say ‘me too’. These times are emotional and fulfilling”

Peter Caruth posted the statement on Instagram less than a week after Leinster rugby player Nick McCarthy also came out as gay. In the post, he mentions the Leinster scrum-half, saying that “for me the world is changing with many sports athletes who have the courage to come out like Jake Daniels, Craig Napier, Lloyd Wilson and, most recently, Nick McCarthy. of Leinster rugby”.

Finally, he says the hockey community warmly welcomed the news and that since he got out, his OCD has eased. Caruth hopes that coming out to the public will help break the stigma and encourage others in similar positions.

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