TX: Tonight - Saturday 7 December at 10.45pm on ITV
The Jonathan Ross Show with Tom Daley, Olivia Coleman, Jack Dee and Professor Brian Cox
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Transcript (note: the video is only a small excerpt of this)
Tom Daley has revealed that it was love at first sight when he met his partner and that he couldn’t be happier.
In an exclusive in-depth interview with Jonathan Ross to be screened on Saturday night, Tom said: “It really was love at first sight, I’d never felt like anything like it before. We were at a party and I hadn’t even spoken to him all night. I didn’t know what to do or if he was gay at first.
“I made the first move, I typed ‘call me’ in his notes with a smiley face on this phone and the next day he texted.
“He makes me feel safe and happy, right now I couldn’t be happier.
“I’d never felt the feeling of love, it happened so quickly, I was completely overwhelmed by it to the point I can’t get him out of my head all the time. I’ve never had it before where I love someone and they love me just as much.
“I’ve got the most amazing friends and family and he’s so supportive and always been there for me.
“He saved me from not wanting to dive anymore. After the Olympics I was down in the dumps, as it’s such a hard way to get back into everything, but he gave me the extra motivation and made me work harder and that is exactly what I need.”
In the emotional interview, Jonathan asked Tom about his decision to talk about his private life for the first time this week.
Tom said: “It was a terrifying decision to make, I didn’t know what the reaction was going to be like, I didn’t know how it was going to go but I felt I needed to say something. I wanted to say something in my own words and from the heart, I didn’t know what else to do.
“Right now I couldn’t be happier, the support and reaction has been amazing, everyone has been so supportive and I just have to thank them.
“People ask why I had a girlfriend last year, well, it’s because I had a girlfriend last year. It wasn’t until spring this year that it came upon me, I didn’t expect this, it happened and everything clicked and felt right.”
Tom also explained why he had never talked about his sexuality before. He said: “It felt like a dirty little secret, it felt like I had chains wrapped around me, I couldn’t be who I was, I felt alone and trapped.
“Just telling one person made me feel so much better, just that one person took a weight off my shoulder.
“I told Sophie my best friend first as I knew she’d be really accepting of it.
“She’s been so supportive and there for me.
“Now that everyone knows, I have nothing to hide, those chains that I felt wrapped around me are gone and I can carry on with my life as normal and be happy.
“I was terrified about doing this as it was so unknown but for everyone to be so supportive about it has been amazing.”
Jonathan asked Tom if he questioned his sexuality when he was growing up. He said: “I felt like there was something wrong with me, I didn’t know other people out there felt that way, I felt so alone, so locked away and couldn’t say anything.”
Giving advice to other young gay teenagers, Tom said: “Tell one person. Tell your story, how you feel.
“I’ve had people send some lovely Twitter messages with people telling me they’ve since come out to their parents, that they’ve had some hope, it shouldn’t matter who I’m dating in this day and age. Be who you want to be.”
Jonathan asked Tom about the reaction from his family. Tom said: “My family will always want to look out for me and not want me to get hurt but they were worried what the reaction would be like in case people would be horrible to me in the streets.
“Now that it’s all happened they couldn’t be happier, the support of the public has been an added bonus, it makes me smile to think about it - my life at the moment is perfect.”
Tom also told Jonathan that he didn’t want to label himself, in terms of his sexuality.
He said: “Everything is all pretty new so I don’t see any point in putting a label on it - gay, bi, straight, any of those kind of labels. All that I feel happy about at the moment is that I’m dating a guy and couldn’t be happier, it shouldn’t matter who I’m dating and I hope people can be happy for me.”
He also explained why he hasn’t wanted to reveal the identity of his partner.
He said: “At the moment, I wouldn’t like anything to change. I hope it doesn’t get ruined by the media attention, everyone has been so supportive and I hope it continues that way.”
Tom also spoke to Jonathan about the new series of Splash! which starts in the New Year on ITV.
He said: “People had mixed opinions about it but I had so much fun…It took off, the ratings spoke for themselves.”
Tom and Jonathan revealed that Jonathan’s brother, Paul Ross, will be in the new series. Tom said: “He’s doing really well, he’s working on a little something special.”
The diver also talked about his hopes for the next Olympics. He said: “I’m training full time now and it’s always tough the first year after the Olympics. I’m working hard and want to be at the Commonwealth Games in the best shape I possibility can.
“My dream is to get an Olympic gold medal and I hope Rio 2016 will be my chance to do that. London 2012 was an amazing experience and so was Beijing but as a diver you normally peak between 22-24 and I’ll be 22 in Rio.”