Clay Aiken, the former 2003 American Idol runner up, multiplatinum recording artist and now Broadway star, confirmed longstanding rumors that he is gay. Aiken came out publicly on the cover of People, holding his infant son, Parker Foster Aiken, with the headline: "Yes, I'm Gay."
"It was the first decision I made as a father," Aiken told the People. "I cannot raise a child to lie or to hide things. I wasn't raised that way, and I'm not going to raise a child to do that."
Aiken came out to his family 4 years ago. He and long-time friend and producer Jaymes Foster welcomed their son, 6 pounds, 2 ounce Parker Foster Aiken, into the world on August 8, 2008. The baby was conceived through in-vitro fertilization. Aiken and Foster plan on raising the child together, although they are not in a romantic relationship.
The Rumors That Clouded Aiken's Career
In an emotionally charged September 2006 interview with Diane Sawyer, Clay Aiken skated around the issue of his sexuality. "What I do in my private life is nobody’s business anymore," Aiken proclaims. Rumors about Clay Aiken’s sexuality had been circulating, well, since his first appearance on the 2003 season of American Idol, but they were never confirmed.
And then came the accusations. Former Army Ranger John Paulus broke his silence to the National Enquirer, revealing an alleged affair with Aiken. He claimed Aiken approached him in an internet chat room. The ranger also said he not only had sex with the pop star, but saved the IM messages and a wash rag.
Aiken seemed extremely annoyed with the rumors. He told Sawyer, "I don’t understand why it’s any of your business. I don’t think you’re rude because I figure, you know, people have a job to do."