Raven during her Disney Channel reign (Image by Disney Channel)
I coulda told you this one—Raven-Symoné has opened up about when she realized she was gay, which was around her twelfth birthday.
I didn't know she knew so young, but when I was a teen-mag editor, I interviewed her many times, as did my staffers, and we all thought she was a little weird. Nice, but weird. In retrospect, it wasn't that she was weird, it was that she was speaking around the subject. I definitely remember one interview in which I asked her about how she interacted with boys during high school and she have me a long wellllll ... in this little-girl voice that made me think it was how a gay person might say it if she were avoiding the subject.
Then were was the fact that she almost lived with Lindsay Lohan.
But Us Weekly reports she told a new docu-series:
[Growing up on TV sets was] not very healthy later in life for me. My likeness, whether you see it in an interview, whether you see it in print, however you see it at that time, had 15 people dictating what I should and should not look like. If I did whatever I want I’m not going to sell because it doesn’t go with the brand. I was branded at such a young age.
About her gay identity specifically, she recalled:
I kind of pushed myself to open myself up to look for boys ... I never thought I would come out because my personal life didn’t matter. It was only what was supposed to be sold as the Raven-Symoné brand.
Though I frequently find her opinions exasperating (maybe another side effect of her odd upbringing?), I must say Raven was always sweet and I'm glad she broke out of that closet.