Odell Beckham Jr. never took offense to the fact that his desire to keep his private life to himself led some to question whether he was gay.
In a wide-ranging interview with GQ, the 26-year-old NFL star shared that he’d “never had an opportunity to talk” about the speculation surrounding his sexuality.
“Honestly wasn’t offended,” the wide receiver said, adding that he’s never had any problem “with anybody who has their own personal life that they live.”
In fact, all the rumors almost made him want to lean into the speculation.
“It’s like when someone gives me an ultimatum, I’m usually always going to go to the opposite way of what you want me to go,” he told the magazine. “So when they would say that, I would almost mess with them even more. I have no problem with anyone’s sexual orientation.”
Beckham Jr., who’s also known for his trademark blonde hair (which he recently cut off) and celebratory dance moves, went on to open up about how close-minded it is to make assumptions about someone because of the way they look and act.
“Even like little videos where they see me leaned back or something, they’ll say that I’m looking at a guy’s ass. And I’m like, ‘Bro! You don’t even know where my mind is at.’ It was just a lose-lose,” he explained to GQ.
The athlete went on to say that this kind of groundless speculation was also applied to him when he was in the company of white women.
“They’d see me with a white woman and be like, ‘Why don’t you be with any sisters?’ I have no problem with any race,” he told GQ. “Love is love. If you’re attracted to somebody, you’re attracted to somebody.”
The NFL player also opened up about the impact of criticism.
“It makes it worse when it comes from the black community,” he told GQ. “You want us to support the black community, and then you go out and bash black people for being happy. So someone can’t be happy, someone can’t be dancing. ‘Oh, he’s always around guys, he’s never around girls.’ “
Beckham Jr. went on to explain that the reason why he doesn’t make his relationships public is because he wants to maintain his privacy.
“I just don’t want you to see what woman I’m with, and I don’t want you in my personal life,” he shared. “I always try to keep my personal life my personal life. I feel like I don’t owe that to anybody.”