Footy player woke up gay after stroke: Daily Telegraph

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Maysie Maysie's picture
Footy player woke up gay after stroke: Daily Telegraph

No, this is not a joke.





Maysie Maysie's picture


Footy player woke up gay after stroke


When 120-kilo rugby player Chris Birch suffered a stroke during a freak accident, his life was transformed - but not in a way that anyone could have predicted.

When he regained consciousness, the 26-year-old - who was engaged to his girlfriend at the time - found his sexuality had completely altered.

'The Chris I knew had gone and a new Chris sort of came along. I came to the realisation that the stroke had turned me gay,' he said.

He is now the subject of a BBC3 documentary, chronicling his attempt over the past few months to make sense of his new identity.


Some scientists believe it is possible that during this recovery process a patient could discover a new skill, accent or even a new sexuality. However, personality changes following a stroke are rare and there have been no documented cases of a stroke changing a person's sexuality.

But Mr Birch, for one, is convinced. Within a year of his stroke he had quit his job at a bank and become a hairdresser, moved out of his family home in the Welsh valleys and started meeting men.

'It was a weird experience,' he told the film crew.

'You walk into somewhere and you go from liking that girl to liking that boy.'

And it's great how he's become every gay stereotype possible.

The response on my Facebook feed seems to be "Suuuuuure, buddy, whatever you say."


Maysie Maysie's picture


Despite all the difficulties Chris said he has no regrets over how his life has turned out. Within a few months of moving out from home he met his then boyfriend and now fiance Jak Powell.

Mr Powell has his own theory that Chris has always been gay and the accident just helped him to realise it.

'People grow up not knowing they are gay and have families and then they realise they are gay, but they don't have a stroke to realise it,' Mr Powell said.

'I think eventually if you hadn't had the stroke it would have happened anyway,' he said.

But Mr Birch is not convinced saying he has memories and photos that prove he was definitely straight before the stroke.

Hee hee.


So, is the original engagement still on? The story doesn't say. And if not, who broke it off?


no word on how good a hairdresser he has suddenly become ...


Is it common to call rugby "footy" in the UK?


Wow, the stroke must have triggered that hairdresser synapse I've heard so much about...

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

 @Michelle LOL!!

That's obviously the real story. Just think if we could isolate the hairdresser gene! What incredible progress we could make coiffing industry!

bagkitty bagkitty's picture

Rumour going around that stroking is all about technique...

Jacob Two-Two

You mean it's not the size of your stroke but what you do with it?

Reminds me of that line from Adaptation, "I think if I had cancer I might divorce my husband, because then nobody could blame me" (or something like that).

But seriously, given that we don't really know why some people are hetero and others are homo, we can't really say that his story isn't true. Maybe someday we actually will be able to choose our sexuality by inducing the right kind of seizures. When you think about it, now that our sexuality has evolved well past the whole procreation imperative, there's no reason for us all not to be bisexual except that many of us just... aren't. It's biology, in my opinion. But if we really could monkey with that, it seems rational for bisexuality to become the norm, with male culture worldwide turning into a constant giant orgy (instead of a giant sublimation of one, ie: sports, strip clubs, the army, etc), and women everywhere shaking their heads at these infantile wankers who won't stop screwing their beer buddies long enough to take out the friggin' garbage.

Red Tory Tea Girl

Yeah, when he says, "I've never been happier," this sounds like the stroke was a pretext, though plausible since a stroke could alter midbrain function. Regardless, I'm glad he's never been happier. If only that 11 year old German girl who's going to be forcibly androgenated were so lucky. But as we economists (okay, just me) like to say, these two different activities have vastly differing barriers to entry. (That, by the way, accounts for a good deal of the disparity in identifiable prevalence)

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

The other possibility is that he could be bi. These things arn't cut and dry by any means.