There are numerous records being smashed at this year's Olympics in South Korea, and among them is the number of out LGBT athletes competing at the winter games: 15 total.
But what is it REALLY like being an out LGBT athlete competing at the Olympics? We asked Dutch snowboarder Cheryl Maas, Czech snowboarder Sarka Pancochova, and Belgian skeletoner Kim Meylemans what no one tells you about being a queer Olympian. Here's what they had to say.
1.All three athletes started out by saying being queer is just one facet of your Olympics experience. It doesn't, and shouldn't, define their athletic experiences.
2.Having said that, your sexuality can help create Olympics history. Maas noted she received a lot of publicity at the Sochi Olympics in Russia, a country notorious for it's anti-LGBT policies. After her event, she held up her glove to TV cameras. It featured a rainbow, the symbol for LGBT pride.
3.People will also expect you to make a statement when you compete as an out athlete at the games.
4.Coming out in athletics isn't necessarily difficult, especially if you're competing in individual events. But it might be a little tougher if you're on a team or a male Olympian.