Anthony Bowens Recalls The Struggles Of Coming Out In Wrestling

Anthony Bowens

Anthony Bowens talked about the uncertainty of coming out in the sport of pro wrestling.

AEW’s Anthony Bowens is an openly proud member of the LGBTQ+ community and one part of The Acclaimed. He made his pro wrestling debut in 2013 and has since been a part of the AEW roster after signing with the company in 2020. Although Bowens has now become a featured player in wrestling, he recently admitted to feeling uncertain at first thanks to his sexuality.

On an episode of “Talk Is Jericho,” Bowens thoroughly discussed his humble beginnings as a closeted wrestler and how scared he was entering the industry for the first time:

“Yeah, I never really, there are a lot of thoughts that were going through my head at one point, if I’d ever be successful in the business. I started wrestling in 2012. And by that point, I’d been out to just my friends at that point. And there wasn’t really that many out athletes; I think Darren Young was the only guy that was like, actively out as a professional wrestler, so there didn’t really seem to be any hope for me if I came out to be successful in the business, so that was something that scared the hell out of me for a very long time.”

“So that was actually one of the biggest things that kept me in the closet for the for a long time, because my friends knew and then my parents eventually knew. And everybody was super supportive, everybody was super helpful and helped me you know, become comfortable with myself.”

“But it was just the wrestling aspect of things that, you know, there’s so many unknowns, like would fans turn on me, would I have to start defending myself in the ring because people might not, you know, like my quote, unquote, lifestyle, there was so many different thoughts that was running through my head. So I had no idea. Like, what am I wasting my time basically, because, you know, I’m bumping for nothing.”

Bowens isn’t the only wrestler who’s part of the LGBTQ+ community in AEW. Sonny Kiss and Nyla Rose are also part of the community and have openly expressed their desire to be a positive influence. Bowens has tagged with his Acclaimed partner, Max Caster, since his debut on the roster. In 2021, he was ranked 304 in PWI’s top 500 wrestlers.

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