Sam Smith is opening up about his own gender identity.
“When I saw the word non-binary/genderqueer and I read into it and I heard these people speaking,” Smith, 26, says. “I was like, ‘F—, that is me.’”
Over the course of the discussion, he spoke of the “wall” that most people have concerning their views of gender and sexuality. Instead, he has embraced a “genderqueer” identity.
“Non-binary/genderqueer is that you do not identify in a gender,” Smith, who still opts for male pronouns at present, explains. “You are a mixture of all different things. You are your own special creation. That’s how I take it — I am not male or female. I think I float somewhere in between — it’s all on the spectrum.”
He continues, “I’ve always been very free in terms of thinking about my sexuality, so I’ve just tried to change that into my thoughts on gender as well.”
Elsewhere in the lengthy interview, Smith discussed his struggles with body image, which he says has been with him “from since I can remember, like since I was a baby.”
As a child, Smith revealed that he was “chubby” and “carried extra estrogen” in his chest, making him self-conscious to wear a bathing suit and opening him up to bullying, including when a classmate grabbed his chest “on the playground in front of all of his friends.”
“I had breasts,” Smith said. “I used to get my mom to write a note to the school when I was like 8 so I wouldn’t have to go to swimming lessons. So it’s something that’s been in me forever,” the singer added.
Smith also revealed that he had liposuction at the age of 12.
“When I was a kid, I was chubby … and then it would get worse and worse and worse and I was holding a lot of weight in my chest. When I hit 11 years old, I went to the doctor’s,” he said. “I was so self-conscious that it was affecting my mood every day.”
“I had liposuction, I was 12 years old,” Smith continued. “At the time I think I was very happy about it. It didn’t really change anything. I think I put the weight back on in two weeks because I hadn’t figured out my relationship with food, so it didn’t really change anything. But being 12 years old and having liposuction on your chest is quite a big deal.”
Smith added that the body image issues persisted beyond his childhood.
“It’s the basis of all my sadness,” he said. “Literally everything I’ve ever been sad about is my weight. I struggle with it every day.”
“I get very, very dark and very sad,” Smith continued.
On Friday, Smith tweeted that doing the interview with Jamil “completely changed” his life.
In February, Smith opened up about his “body trauma” in an emotional Instagram post.
“In the past if I have ever done a photoshoot with so much as a t-shirt on, I have starved myself for weeks in advance and then picked and prodded at every picture and then normally taken the picture down,” he wrote.
“Yesterday I decided to fight the f— back,” he continued. “Reclaim my body and stop trying to change this chest and these hips and these curves that my mum and dad made and love so unconditionally.”
He finished by saying: “I’ll always be at war with this bloody mirror but this shoot and this day was a step in the right f—ing direction.”