Brittney Griner Explains How She Learned To Accept Herself, Her Sexuality & Her Identity

May 29, 2013  |  

Source: ESPN

Chances are, if you’ve kept up with sports, you’ve heard about Brittney Griner. The 6 foot 8 basketball player made a name for herself as the star player on Baylor’s Women’s Basketball team and attracted national attention when Dallas Mavericks owner, Mark Cuban invited her to play for his team.

Though she’s receiving tons of accolades now, Brittney sat down with ESPN to explain that there were times when she wasn’t always so popular. In fact, while some have accepted her, there are still many more who are still taunting her, trying to figure out her gender and bashing her open expression of her sexuality.

Brittney explained that from as early as she could remember, she felt different than the other girls her age. While other students were playing house, squealing about being “wives,” Griner knew early that she didn’t want to be a wife she wanted to be a husband.

Griner explains how she’d feel when her parents put her in a dress:

“When I’m in a dress, it’s like, ‘What am I doing in this?’ I feel trapped, like I’m in shackles and handcuffs and a straitjacket. So I was just like, F— it, I’m going to wear what I want. I caught hell for it, but it felt so good being myself.”

Brittney’s struggles with her sexuality and identity didn’t stop internally. People in her school made accepting who she was exceptionally difficult. Other students would taunt her:

“Show us your private part. We know you have one.”

“Every incident was a variation on a theme. A girl would come up and grope at her flat chest, calling to the other kids: “See? Nothing!”

But when Griner attempted to come out to her father, the reception wasn’t too friendly.

“I ain’t raising no gay girl.” The former Marine set the house rules, and he forbade Brittney from inviting friends — male or female — over to hang out. Brittney and Ray clashed often, both too stubborn for their own good. By the time she was a senior, the self-described daddy’s girl was done with Ray’s idea of normal, so she moved out and stayed with the Nimitz junior varsity basketball coach.”

There were times when Brittney cried all by herself at night, considering taking her own life.

Eventually though, Brittney came to love who she is and her father came to understand that Brittney just wanted to be accepted for who she was. Her successful basketball career helped her father to see who she really was.

Check out the rest of Brittney’s interview and her internal struggles over at

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  • Jules

    Seriously, WNBA Players make little money. I can see if she writes a book or gets endorsements which will likely be for gay friendly products but the WNBA is not a lucrative product at all.

    • If you don’t think the first woman who can consistently dunk isn’t going to clean up with Nike and other sponsors you’re crazy. As far as WNBA players not making much . . . .they probably are within the top 10% income bracket in this country. They certainly ain’t broke. Daddy sniffing around his “successful” daughter and its for more than a reconciliation IMO.

    • kittymabach

      im pretty sure its more than what you are making

  • MLS2698

    I don’t like dresses, either. So I put a pair of capri leggings under my summer maxi’s; That way, I don’t have to always sit prim and proper. But I’m still a woman who likes men……sorry.

    • bAINES


      • MLS2698

        Are you insinuating that my comment was a diss? But you know….If I were 6 foot 8 inches, I bet I would have run out of estrogen a long time ago, so she has a point.

  • FromUR2UB

    Snake people. Ugh!

    • MLS2698

      What snake, all I see is big yellow?

      • FromUR2UB

        You said big phallic??

        • MLS2698

          She wishes!

          • FromUR2UB

            The drape over the shoulder must be a supposed boast, too.

            • MLS2698

              A boast boa……hmmmmm. Again, she wishes!

              • FromUR2UB

                “Boast boa”. I think I’ll start using that. It has possibilities.

                Practice sentences: The snake was only a mocking reminder of her ghost boa, as opposed to the boast boa for which she had long yearned.

                His boastful boa made others appear to shrink away in shame.

                • MLS2698

                  LOL! Yes, it works.

  • Her successful basketball career helped her father to see who she really was <<<<,sounds to me like a selfish and greedy parent who didn't accept his child until she blew up and now he wants to reap the rewards an be a "family"

    • Jules

      Umm, WNBA players make like 50K a year, no reaping here

      • CC

        That may be more than what he’s making now, plus by her possibly being in the WNBA she could easily branch out into other things with her foot already in the public eye.