The lead singer of New Wave pop group Neon Trees has come out of the closet despite being raised as a Mormon. Tyler Glenn revealed his sexual orientation to friends and family last October after keeping it a secret for years.
"I've always felt like I'm an open book, and yet obviously I haven't been completely," the 30-year-old told Rolling Stone magazine in an interview. He had been living in denial since a teenager. "I had my crushes on guys throughout high school, but it was never an overwhelming thing until my twenties," he said. "Then I'd be dating girls and in love with my straight friend and it was the worst feeling in the world."
Glenn chose to tell the people close to him when working on his band's upcoming album "Pop Psychology". And he admired those who bravely came out like him. "I really love all of the sports figures that are coming out recently," he said. "I appreciated [that] Michael Sam was like, 'I want to be able to go to the movies and hold hands with my boyfriend.' Even hearing him say 'boyfriend,' I was just like, that's cool." Sam, a pro football prospect, came out in February.
However, he has a complicated relationship with his religion. Raised in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he revealed how the church sat with homosexuality. "We were always taught, and I hate this word, 'tolerance'," he said. "The only time that felt different was when the Prop 8 thing came up." Mormon church supported California's referendum to ban gay marriage, spending millions of dollars in 2008.
Glenn tweeted on Monday, March 24, a few days after the interview was published, "All I can say right now is I'm the happiest lil weirdo I've been in my whole entire life. Thank you for the support and love. Yes. I am a happy and healthy Mormon gay pop star. I don't know what it all means, but I'm ok with it."