Anderson Cooper: I'm Gay and Proud
updated 07/02/2012 AT 01:30 PM EDT
•originally published 07/02/2012 AT 11:55 AM EDT
"The fact is, I'm gay, always have been, always will be, and I couldn't be any more happy, comfortable with myself, and proud," the CNN anchor, 45, wrote Monday in an open letter to his longtime friend Andrew Sullivan of the Daily Beast.
The host of Anderson Cooper: 360º also says that he has waited until now to announce the fact because, "As long as a journalist shows fairness and honesty in his or her work, their private life shouldn't matter."
Cooper, who also hosts his own syndicated talk daytime show Anderson, addressed the subject after Sullivan – a British writer who is openly gay and Catholic – put the question to him in light of a cover story in the current Entertainment Weekly. The article focused on how gay people in the public life are currently coming out in understated and matter-of-fact ways.
"Andrew, as you know, the issue you raise is one that I've thought about for years. Even though my job puts me in the public eye, I have tried to maintain some level of privacy in my life. Part of that has been for purely personal reasons. I think most people want some privacy for themselves and the people they are close to," Cooper began.
"It's become clear to me that by remaining silent on certain aspects of my personal life for so long," he continued. "I have given some the mistaken impression that I am trying to hide something – something that makes me uncomfortable, ashamed or even afraid. This is distressing because it is simply not true."