The Unexpected Case Of Rugby Player Sam Stanley’s Boyfriend

The Unexpected Case Of Rugby Player Sam Stanley’s Boyfriend

“It’s awesome to see so many athletes being true to themselves now,” rugby player Sam Stanley wrote to Outsports’ Cyd Zeigler earlier this year. “The thing for me was never that I wasn’t ready, it was more how to do it. I was going to put it on Twitter but my other half convinced me not to. I’m happy with how it’s all gone.”

The rugby player, who says he was partly inspired by rugby player Keegan Hirst coming out publicly, revealed to the people in his sport that he’s gay more than six months ago, and wrote in February that so far, the response has been positive: “The reaction from my current and past team mates and coaches has been great so far. I’ve wanted to do this for such a long time but didn’t really know how to and telling people one by one would have been way too stressful. … I’ve not been happier and now this huge burden has gone I can move forward and finally be myself. No more lying. Feel liberated!!!”

Stanley talked of his other half; coming out at the age of 23, he probably had the pick of twinks, twerkers and gym-obsessed twats – but the England Sevens player is already taken, and it’s not who people might expect.

Meet Laurence Hicks.sam1

Sam’s boyfriend is, let’s be fair, a little older. While we’re not entirely sure how old he is, he looks to be a friendly-looking guy in his 40s.

The funny thing is, is that Sam has been gently coming out of the closet for the past three months. You just had to know where to look.

This is from an end of season awards dinner.sam2

This is them at a Bette Midler concert.sam3

This is at a family BBQ, where Sam explicitly refers to Laurence as his ‘other half’.sam5

They seem like a pretty happy couple. Laurence works for a travel company, has two kids in their 20s, and, quick reminder, he takes Sam to see Bette Midler concerts. That is a good guy.

A lot of people have expressed surprise at the pairing. The question is why. Age gaps have been a part of gay relationships for centuries – just ask the Greeks. Plus there’s Tom Daley and Dustin Lance Black, where there’s a 20 year difference. Or what about Ellen DeGeneres and Portia De Rossi? There’s 15 years between them. Stephen Fry and his husband Elliott Spencer? 30 years.

In Sam’s coming out interview to the Sunday Times, he said he considered committing suicide four or five years ago. After that moment, four or five years ago, he met Laurence.

‘I was standing on a bridge…overlooking a motorway in Essex,’ he said. ‘However, looking back, the idea that I would jump was ridiculous but it was as if I was thinking that I could get rid of the pain in one go.

‘You are so worried about what people will think and I thought I couldn’t be a macho rugby player the way I was, and there was nothing else I wanted to do with my life.’

When a lot of gay men and women come out, starting to navigate their sexuality, it’s natural for a lot of them to seek older people to date. These relationships may last a short while or it may last a lifetime, but it’s not as uncommon as one might think.

Sam is at a point where he may still be figuring himself out, and he might need someone more mature to help him out on his personal journey, or he might have simply just found someone that makes sense to have in his life.

This isn’t to say Laurence hasn’t had his own journey, he’s had two kids after all, but he might be the stability that both of them need. But who knows? It’s their relationship.

When people look at relationships with an age gap, some think the older one is always sleazy or the younger one is always a gold-digger. That’s judging at face value. And if you know anything about relationships, judging at face value can be a mistake.

Sam Stanley’s coming out will undoubtedly change the world of rugby. But it should also help to change our expectations of what a relationship is and what it should look like. As long as the love is there, who cares?

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57 Comments

  1. #Chestnut
    September 09, 07:33 Reply

    “40s”? That man is not below 54,biko!
    #iLoveRugby…*sigh*

    • Griffin
      September 09, 07:54 Reply

      Don’t we all!!!!!, love rugby i mean.

    • Keredim
      September 09, 09:04 Reply

      @Chestnut He could be in his 40s. Some oyibo people (especially on the Island) don’t age well.

  2. Francis
    September 09, 07:57 Reply

    Love sha. It doesn’t give a fuck about your “type” when it hits you. Wherever you find it, just go with it and hope for the best. They look happy ??

    • Peak
      September 09, 11:34 Reply

      So so true about your “type” comment

  3. Griffin
    September 09, 08:00 Reply

    This is sooo me, Daddy chaser, I love it. I don’t care for their money… ….they’re just super aggressive and adventurous in bed. They’re sweet to be around and i like to cuddle ?. Can’t go beyond 20years difference tho, well so far i haven’t, but who knows.. ..lobe works in mysterious ways.

    • Max
      September 09, 08:25 Reply

      Trying hard not to cringe

      • Griffin
        September 09, 09:19 Reply

        Cringe all you wany Max, I have my fun.. …FYI, the older dude i dated looked nothing like his age and was as fit as a bull.

        • Max
          September 09, 09:57 Reply

          **pukes all over the floor**

      • Tiercel de Claron
        September 09, 10:43 Reply

        Why do I always get this feeling that these things you rail against,roles/older and whatnot,are just you fighting some inner demons?.You know,those things you really want but won’t see yourself going for,as they may affect some nebulous image of yourself you have in your head.

      • Tiercel de Claron
        September 09, 10:45 Reply

        Let your hair down a little,Max.Live.
        Love will so blindside you,when it does come,you’ll wonder what hit you.

        • Max
          September 09, 15:09 Reply

          Love for that kind of thing in the pic above?, you clearly don’t know me.
          *pukes more**

  4. Mandy
    September 09, 08:10 Reply

    This reads like something JArch would endorse. lol

    • JArch
      September 09, 13:25 Reply

      Lmao Mandy lemme oo

      ***slurps slowly on my orange juice
      while side eyeing pinky***

  5. Masked Man
    September 09, 08:13 Reply

    Okay!
    Let me find myself a daddy!
    Ah! Jimi Agbaje!

    • Griffin
      September 09, 09:24 Reply

      I know right!!!!!!, shaved head, serious looking, tight skin.. ……I’ll take 2 of that.

    • Olly Goes
      September 09, 09:43 Reply

      … But have u seen Jimi Agbaje’s lil brother? Cute is an understatement. And he heads a top 5 bank. If u see him u will drop JK like its hot.

      • Masked Man
        September 09, 10:28 Reply

        Dear Olly,
        Are you fucking kidding me?
        Drop his name lemme go and do PI.
        A brother gotta try his luck.

        • Olly Goes
          September 09, 10:40 Reply

          If I drop his name they will sue. Google ‘Agbaje’ and that bank with a three letter acronym that combines two ways of calling someone Gay in Nigeria….

          • Olly Goes
            September 09, 10:41 Reply

            Oh and check his YouTube videos too. The fine boi speaks English like he was born in Buckingham Palace.

          • Masked Man
            September 09, 10:46 Reply

            Wow!
            It is not a lie oh.
            I’ve seen him. Chineke!
            If he decides not to be a banker anymore, he can have a career in sperm donation.

        • Tiercel de Claron
          September 09, 10:50 Reply

          Hian.
          Don’t tell me you don’t know who GTB’s MD is,MM.
          Hmmm……….GTB,you have something there Olly

          • Francis
            September 09, 10:55 Reply

            Wait first, what’s with all the coding bikonu? Why e had to drop full name abi una want make person just dey Google aimlessly like say work no dey office today? Hian

          • Masked Man
            September 09, 10:56 Reply

            Tiercel, I’ve been busy whoring around to take note.

            • Tiercel de Claron
              September 09, 12:03 Reply

              E kwem.
              I’ve never said you whore around,just horned up like some billy goat.

              • Masked Man
                September 09, 13:08 Reply

                I get so horny that there’s no other option than to get it from anywhere available.
                Judge nut!

    • Max
      September 09, 09:57 Reply

      @MM, no wonder. Chai

      • kacee
        September 09, 10:45 Reply

        Max pls leave my Sweetie for me, body no be firewood lmao

  6. kacee
    September 09, 10:13 Reply

    older people are so obsessive to the point they treat u like a child (so annoying) #icantdeal but i’ll love to date hehehehe Rita Dominic or Genevieve (a girl gonna dream right)

    • Francis
      September 09, 10:19 Reply

      Lol. Baby gal, you’re jamming the insecure ones and the typical “Am I your mate” Africans

      • kacee
        September 09, 10:50 Reply

        lol they are not, “Am I your mate” type are Ngozi Ezeonu n Eucharia Anunobi.

        • Francis
          September 09, 10:56 Reply

          Hm, this one wey you mention names are you trying to tell us something? *gbegborun mode*

  7. Dennis Macaulay
    September 09, 11:24 Reply

    You often move about with a mental physical specification of the kind of guy you wanna date, but then you fall in love with someone who looks exactly opposite and love takes you away.

    Take this from a man who knows

  8. Francis
    September 09, 11:28 Reply

    All this team light skin pipu sha. Abeg Jimi fine pass ?

  9. sinnex
    September 09, 12:05 Reply

    Why can’t I have love like this?

    Most hot, muscular and young guys are only into hot, muscular and young guys. Why? Why? Why? Why the discrimination?

    The few who are willing to play ball are doing it with for a price.

    • Keredim
      September 09, 12:14 Reply

      “Most hot, muscular and young guys are only into hot, muscular and young guys. Why? Why? Why? Why the discrimination?”

      Darling, it’s not “discrimination”, it’s “preference”.

      • Heiress
        September 09, 13:44 Reply

        Define such preferences maybe I fit your spec ???

        • Francis
          September 09, 13:52 Reply

          Cement chest and bubble ynash.

        • Keredim
          September 09, 14:39 Reply

          What Franca said, plus 6 pack…?

            • Keredim
              September 09, 15:31 Reply

              Ok.. There might be other redeeming features that could replace the Six Pack.

              Will review on a case by case basis?

          • Heiress
            September 10, 06:11 Reply

            You are in luck!! Just might have both ?

  10. Khaleesi
    September 09, 12:52 Reply

    Wow! Profound … to each his own sha, so long as they’re both happy and regularly hit cloud 9 in bed, wetin concern me?

  11. Diablo
    September 09, 22:53 Reply

    This is like me and my bf except he doesn’t have a pot belly and still looks great for a man in his 40s.

    Ps : I really need a break from work. I feel so out of touch with whats been happening here. 🙁

    • Pink Panther
      September 10, 04:38 Reply

      Yea. I for one do miss seeing you around here. 🙂

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