Skip to Content

RJ Helton: “just because I am gay does not mean I can’t love God”

A week after National Coming Out Day, RJ Helton, a contestant on the first season of American Idol, said that he’s gay.

RJ, who placed fifth and made it to the top 10 as the wildcard selection, and whose album Real Life was released in 2004, came out on Sirius Satellite Radio Wednesday morning. He said that he didn’t plan on telling the world about his sexual orientation, but just decided in the moment. Here, thanks to USA TODAY’s Idol Chatter blog, is RJ’s conversation with OutQ in the Morning host Larry Flick:

LARRY FLICK: What made you decide not to do inspirational music anymore?

RJ HELTON: … the industry has just really jaded me…I can have a faith but can’t be who I want to be or who I feel that I am…so a lot of it was just personal things I needed to overcome and just be proud of who I was…just because I am gay does not mean I can’t love God.

LARRY FLICK: Well there you go..congratulations. This is something that I wasn’t sure you were going to talk about on the air today so what made you decide to come out?

RJ HELTON: Today..this morning..3 seconds ago. I’ve never even said that. It feels good.

RJ makes a declaration [Idol Chatter]

All reality blurred content is independently selected, including links to products or services. However, if you buy something after clicking an affiliate link, I may earn a commission, which helps support reality blurred. Learn more.

More great stories

About the author

  • Andy Dehnart is the creator of reality blurred and a writer and teacher who obsessively and critically covers reality TV and unscripted entertainment, focusing on how it’s made and what it means.


I value our community at reality blurred, which connects people through open and thoughtful conversations about the TV we’re watching and the stories about it.

Comment rules: My goal is for us to be able to share our perspectives and exchange ideas in a welcoming, supportive space. That’s why I’ve created these rules for commenting here. By commenting below, you confirm that you’ve read and agree to them.

Happy discussing!