Former Lesbian, Opens Up About Falling in Love With a Man

I think she was just sexually confused. Or is bisexual. Either that or the husband has been sooooo loving, she just had to convert to heterosexuality! LOL!

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McCray’s interview with Essence magazine comes 34 years after she penned a 1979 essay for the publication about coming out as a gay woman. She said she fell in love with a man ‘by putting aside the assumptions I had about the form and package my love would come in.’


	NY Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and wife, Chirlane de Blasio; photos from trip to Ghana.
NY Public Advocate Bill de Blasio‘s wife, Chirlane de Blasio; photos from trip to Ghana.

Bill de Blasio’s wife opened up about falling in love with a man after years of identifying as a lesbian and their life as a “very conventional, unconventional couple” in a candid interview released Thursday.

Chirlane McCray, 58, said her relationship with de Blasio was made possible “by putting aside the assumptions I had about the form and package my love would come in.”

The interview, with Essence magazine, comes 34 years after McCray penned a groundbreaking 1979 essay for Essence entitled, “I Am a Lesbian,” about coming out as a gay black woman.

A dozen years later, in 1991, McCray met de Blasio while she worked for the New York Commission on Human Rights and he was an aide to then-Mayor David Dinkins.

New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio hugged his wife, Chirlane McCray, after announcing his Democratic candidacy for mayor.

© KEITH BEDFORD / REUTERS/REUTERS

New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio hugged his wife, Chirlane McCray, after announcing his Democratic candidacy for mayor.

“I was wearing West African-inspired clothing and a nose ring, and Bill says he had the love-at-first-sight experience,” she said. “I did note what a good-looking guy he was and that he was funny and smart and made other people laugh.”

McCray said the fact that he was a man, and white, was not her biggest concern.

“All I could think about was, ‘He’s six years younger than me!’” she said.

Pictured is a screengrab from MYFOXNY.COM showing a page from a 1979 Essence magazine article called "I AM A LESBIAN." written by Chirlane McCray, before she married New York City Public Advocate Bill DiBlasio.

MYFOXNY.COM

Pictured is a screengrab from MYFOXNY.COM showing a page from a 1979 Essence magazine article called “I AM A LESBIAN.” written by Chirlane McCray, before she married New York City Public Advocate Bill DiBlasio.

Asked if it was “strange being with a man,” given her history with women, McCray said:

“I came out at 17. I hadn’t really dated any men. I thought, ‘Whoa, what is this?’ But I also didn’t think, ‘Oh, now I’m attracted to men.’ I was attracted to Bill. He felt like the perfect person for me. For two people who look so different, we have a lot in common. We are a very conventional, unconventional couple.”

De Blasio was aware of her history, but her essay in Essence “shook him up,” she said.

Bill de Blasio and Chirlane McCray have been married for 19 years and have two teenage children,  Dante and Chiara.

CRAIG WARGA/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Bill de Blasio and Chirlane McCray have been married for 19 years and have two teenage children, Dante and Chiara.

“Other people told him in the beginning. Then at some point I gave him the article and said, “Look, this is who I am and you should read this.” It shook him up. But he didn’t show it. He was cool about it.”

The couple has now been married for 19 years and has two teenage children.

McCray’s past, while never a secret, was not discussed during de Blasio’s successful 2009 campaign for public advocate.

Bill de Blasio announces his run for mayor with his wife Chirlane.

DEBBIE EGAN-CHIN/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Bill de Blasio announces his run for mayor with his wife Chirlane.

It only became widely known last December when news organizations wrote about her 1979 essay.

McCray and de Blasio then did a whirlwind of television interviews to talk about her past and their relationship. McCray and the couple’s children have been prominent, at times, in his campaign.

Her past serves as a counterpoint, of sorts, to the historic nature of City Council Speaker Christine Quinn’s rival Democratic candidacy.

McCray called the political power duo a ‘very conventional, unconventional couple.’

MARCUS SANTOS/FOR NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

McCray called the political power duo a ‘very conventional, unconventional couple.’

Quinn, who is married to a woman, Kim Catullo, would be city’s the first openly gay mayor if elected.

In the Essence interview, McCray said she was unconcerned when her sexual past was publicized.

McCray, who said she doesn’t like labels, declined to call herself bisexual, but suggested that she can still be attracted to women.

“I’m married, I’m monogamous, but I’m not dead and Bill isn’t either,” she told the magazine with a laugh.

“I know my husband loves me fiercely and passionately. I know he supports me and will always stand up for me.”

 

klee@nydailynews.com

 

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