• Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Lance Bass Reveals the Surprising Reason He Relates to Colton Underwood's Coming Out Experience

Corinne Heller
·4 min read
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Lance Bass can relate to Colton Underwood, the former Bachelor star who recently came out as gay, and is offering him some advice.

The 29-year-old Indiana native and former football player, who headed season 23 of the ABC dating show and was once engaged to winner Cassie Randolph, revealed his sexuality on Wednesday, April 14, in an interview on the network's Good Morning America. Bass, who came out publicly as gay himself at age 27 in 2006, recently pointed out the similarities between their experiences.

"In this business, you meet tons of people that are still in the closet and there's several major actors and musicians out there that still have not been able to come out publicly because they fear many things," the former *NSYNC singer said on Bachelor Nation stars Ben Higgins and Ashley Iaconetti' The Ben and Ashley I Almost Famous podcast on Thursday, April 15. "Everyone's coming out is their own story. And I'm just glad that Colton could tell his story."

Bass, 41, continued, "I can really relate to his experience because in a way, I was kind of like in a Bachelor Nation situation where 90% of my fans were women and they all thought I was straight. And I made my money off of women, right, and singing about love and using that market. So, me coming out, it was scary because I was like, 'Oh crap, now everyone is going to see me as a liar, and why did I do this to them?' You start telling yourself all these just the worst-case-possible scenarios of everything."

The Bachelor Relationships Ranked From Shortest to Longest

Being a member of *NSYNC, he said, was the main reason why it took him so long to reveal his sexuality.

"As long as I was in the group, I didn't want to even talk about it, mention it, act on it, because it was so ingrained in me that if anyone found out I was gay, #NSYNC would be over. Done. And now I have my four best friends' careers in my hands that I just completely just trashed," he said. "I just didn't want to hurt my group."

Bass said his upbringing in Mississippi was also a factor in his reluctance to come out. "I grew up in the church, going to church three times a week. You're taught that gay people are going to hell," he said. "When that's instilled at you at such a young age, you think that's the truth."

In his GMA interview, Underwood said, "I had already grown up in the Catholic church, I had gone to Catholic grade school, I had learned in the Bible that gay is a sin."

Lance Bass, Colton Underwood
Lance Bass, Colton Underwood

On the podcast, Bass also recalled how he felt he was forced to come out publicly, which he did in a magazine interview following speculative stories in online gossip sites, and after a magazine journalist called and told him they planned to write about his sexuality.

"I was outed," he said. "I didn't have a choice."

 

Bass also said on the podcast that not all members of the gay community will be happy about how Underwood chose to reveal his sexuality.

"He definitely going to get a lot of backlash from the community at first," he said. "Not the majority but there is a small percentage of the community that's just going to not like the fact that he came out this way, that he's using this as monetizing the experience."

After Underwood came out, Variety reported that he has a deal with Netflix to make a reality show focusing on him living life as a gay man. Bass said on the podcast that such a "documentary" is "only going to help the community."

"Every story that you see on television or in a film of a gay character, a different person can relate to that," he said. "We haven't had too many representations if a gay person on television that came from this world, this crazy sports world where you had to hide it."

On the podcast, Bass offered Underwood some advice: "Listen."

"That's all you need to do right now, is just listen to the community, listen to everyone around you. Educate yourself and then you'll naturally find where you belong in this community. But the best thing to do right now is sit back, listen and learn."