Ryan O’Callaghan is a former Patriots and Chiefs lineman. He was drafted by the Patriots in the 5th round in 2006. He only started a handful of games for them before being placed on IR in 2008 and then waived in 2009. He was picked up by the Chiefs the following day and lasted there until 2011.
Football was the perfect cover for him, he explained to OutSports.com O’Callaghan says,
Football was the most masculine thing I could do
He describes his time in the Pats locker room when they would talk about women and having sex.
There is so much talk about women in the locker room, even in the NFL,” he said, exasperated with the amount of times he heard the chatter. “I’d just turn around and ignore it. I figured I couldn’t even talk about it well, like they would see through me if I did
Whenever they’d ask about women he was dating, he’d say he was dating girl from back home. He’d basically mask it and one time he really had to go full length. Like when he called an ex-girlfriend of a former Cal teammate to be his date at Robert Kraft and his late wife Myra’s anniversary bash. He just wanted the team to see a woman on his arms so nothing would be further speculated about him.
He also explains the suicidal path he was on after he realized his NFL career was coming to an end due to injuries and now the one thing he used to hide his sexuality was gone.
The injuries created so much down time, and that’s when my mind went into overdrive
The combination of both things made him turn to pain killers.
I was abusing painkillers, no question,” he said matter-of-factly. “It helped with the pain of the injuries, and with the pain of being gay. I just didn’t worry about being gay when I took the Vicodin. I just didn’t worry
Physical rehab at the Chiefs facility and a watchful eye from the team’s head trainer, David Price started O’Callaghan’s journey to help him deal with his abusing pain killers and embracing his sexuality.
Incredible journey for this guy and you can read his profile at Outsports.com.