The 34-year-old comedian – who has previously discussed having relationships with both men and women – admitted that after his father had had an an affair while married to his mother he was left with a “secret” that he kept from everyone in bis life.
Speaking on his new HBO special ‘Rothaniel’, he said: “After [the affair] was out in the open, I was left alone feeling like a liar, because I had a secret,” he says. “One that I kept from my father, my mother, my family, my friends, and you. Professionally, personally. And the secret is that I’m gay.”
The former ‘Carmichael Show’ star was met with applause from the studio audience upon his announcement and while he was appeciatve, he went on to explain that he had spent his whole life “rebelling against” his sexuality and never thought he would “come out.”
He added: “I’m accepting the love, I really appreciate the love. My ego wants to rebel against it. “I rebelled against it my whole life. I thought I’d never, ever come out. At many points I thought I’d rather die than confront the truth of that, to actually say it to people. Because I know it changes some people’s perceptions of me. I can’t control that.”
Jerrod went on to explain that while his mother still has her religious views and as a result his relationship with her has become more “fraught” with her since coming out, he now feels more “free.”
He said: “As much as she believes in God, I believe in personal growth and feeling free. And I do feel freer.”