Magic Johnson’s son, Earvin “E.J.” Johnson II, has been talking about his experience of coming out as gay.
E.J., who was outed byTMZ earlier this month, chatted to YouTube talk show “Gwissues” about revealing his sexual orientation.
The 20-year-old said he was “reveling” in the experience, and said the public nature of his coming out had proven “exciting and interesting.” However, he also admitted he had attracted criticism from strangers, some of which was “nasty.”
Asked whether he felt violated by TMZ‘s exposure of his sexuality, E.J. seemed philosophical about the process:
“I always wanted to come into the spotlight. I always had dreams and plans of doing my own thing and creating my own image, so it came a little sooner than I thought it would but this is still something I knew I would be going through and would have to experience.”
E.J. also described how TMZ found out about his sexuality:
“I was just hanging out on the Sunset Strip with my best friend – he’s not my boyfriend, but he’s my best friend – and we like to hold hands some times, and TMZ just came up to me and started asking me questions and at first I thought they kind of know who I am, but not really, and this was something I’d never really done before so I thought I’d be nice and polite to them and answer their questions. […] Then TMZ contacted my parents and said they were going to air [the story], but I didn’t think it was going to be that serious.”
As it happens, the story went much bigger than E.J. expected.
For Magic Johnson’s son, this was essentially the second time he has had to come out. E.J. said he revealed his sexuality to his parents when he was “13 or 14,” but said his family had supported him all the way:
“I am very, very, very blessed to have the family that I do. My parents have always been super supportive. My sister and I have always been really close, and she’s been really supportive as with my brother. When it was time to come out, I was, obviously, scared as most people are. After I got all the love and support from my family, then I knew I could go out and conquer the world, I guess.”
Magic Johnson himself said he fully supported his son after the TMZ story broke, stating he was a “million percent” behind E.J. Speaking earlier this month, the NBA legend said:
“Cookie and I love E.J. and support him in every way. We’re very proud of him.”
E.J. conceded that coming out to his family had been difficult, saying that “no parent is prepared” for such an event:
“Everyone has to get used to it. No parent is prepared 100 percent and fully for something like that. We all had to work and move forward.”
You can watch Gwissues’ interview with Magic Johnson’s son below: