Karina Manta, an ice dancer for Team USA, came out as bisexual in a video with her girlfriend, Aleena.
Manta is seen sitting on a bed while reading from a phone while Aleena sits beside her playing the guitar. Manta thanks her girlfriend for being by her side even as she forced them both in the closet by hiding their relationship.
“I’ve been with you for a whole year and I wanted to say thank you,” Manta says. “Mostly thank you for being here even though I’ve made your love my shadow. Thank you for waiting through every conversation that I’ve referred to you as my best friend, not because you’re not my best friend, but because I’ve had to swallow the words ‘my love my love my love’ each time instead.”
“There’s no pretty way to say that I’ve made myself sick living my life this afraid. I’ve spent the past year as two different people, bags under each of their eyes for different reasons. Neither side of the pillow feels safe. I grow more exhausted every day,” she continues.“I am itching to shed my skin. I have long outgrown the cocoon. Today I am waking with the biggest yawn, stretching my limbs and saying, ‘I’m Karina, it’s nice to meet you after so long.’”
Manta told Outsports she is “grateful” for the positive reaction she’s gotten from the video but also calls it “overwhelming.”
“I’m adjusting to having more attention directed toward something I’ve kept fairly private for some time,” she said.