GMA’s Robin Roberts Acknowledges Same-Sex Relationship In New Disclosure

GMA's Robin Roberts Acknowledges Same-Sex Relationship

Morning-show co-anchor thanks longtime girlfriend in Facebook post

Good Morning America” co-anchor Robin Roberts has acknowledged publicly for the first time a longstanding relationship with a woman, marking another bout of personal disclosure for the popular newswoman whose 2012 fight with myleodysplastic syndrome corresponded with a surge in the ratings for the ABC morning show.

In a post made Sunday on Facebook, Roberts said she was mulling her state a year earlier, in 2012, when she reached an important 100 day-milestone after undergoing a blood marrow transplant.

“At this moment I am at peace and filled with joy and gratitude. I am grateful to God, my doctors and nurses for my restored good health,” she wrote. “I am grateful for my sister, Sally-Ann, for being my donor and giving me the gift of life. I am grateful for my entire family, my long time girlfriend, Amber, and friends as we prepare to celebrate a glorious new year together. I am grateful for the many prayers and well wishes for my recovery. I return every one of them to you 100 fold. On this last Sunday of 2013 I encourage you to reflect on what you are grateful for too.”

SEE ALSO: ‘Duck Dynasty’ Star to Return after Anti-Gay Comments

An ABC News spokeswoman said Roberts has been in a ten-year relationship with a woman named Amber Laign, a massage therapist in private practice originally from the Bay Area, and noted that the two had met through mutual friends. Laign specializes in helping people recovering from injuries, the spokeswoman said.

Roberts’ personal life has become intertwined with her professional one since the revelation of her disease in 2012 and the on-air updates that followed regarding her status. ABC wrung  much from her absence, giving viewers regular reports and letting them visit with  Roberts via video or a short visit she made to the set during her recovery period.

While Roberts was gone, ABC’s “Good Morning America” extended the number of weeks it  trumped NBC’s “Today” for the viewers advertisers covet. These days, “GMA” is firmly in the lead, while executives at NBC News have made changes, including the addition of Carson Daly to the morning broadcast, aimed at bringing viewers back to its fold. “Today” had dominated the morning talk-show realm for 16 years until hitting a snag in 2012 during an awkward transition between co-host Ann Curry and her replacement, Savannah Guthrie.

ABC News has under the aegis of its president, Ben Sherwood,  continued to focus on the personal lives of its on-air correspondents. In recent weeks, reporter Amy Robach has generated publicity by telling the story in November of her discovery of having breast cancer after receiving a mammogram on  television a month earlier. The correspondent subsequently underwent a double mastectomy and returned to ABC’s air in December.

In October, “20/20” anchor Elizabeth Vargas disclosed she was entering a program for treatment of alcohol dependency. She has since confirmed she’s completed treatment, but a definitive return to the air has not been disclosed.

Roberts’ disclosure comes just days after a furor over anti-gay remarks made by Phil Robertson, head of the clan featured in A&E’s reality series “Duck Dynasty.” During an interview with GQ magazine, Robertson cast aspersions on people in same-sex relationships and African-Americans, prompting a suspension by the cabler’s parent, A+E Networks, and a quick reversal of the decision – drawing anger from supporters of both Robertson and the groups he offended.  As co-host of what is arguably the nation’s favorite morning program, Roberts may help fuel more discussion and debate in this latest clash of cultural values.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 53

Leave a Reply

53 Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. Annie Walker says:

    Robin, Thank you for being a stellar example of womanhood in courage and strength. My best to you always. Most respectfully…Annie

  2. rakava says:

    OK…. who is surprised? Tell me…. anyone??? Just like Anderson Cooper and Sam Champion, it was an open secret. I like that this generation of celebrities aren’t actually making a big deal about coming out. I hope that at this point we are at a place where someone like Robin being gay is a facet of who she is like being a woman is or being African American is or being from Mississippi is vs. all she is.

    In full disclosure, I find Ellen to be utterly and totally annoying therefore, I may just associate the full on coming out announcement as utterly and totally annoying – that said being gay IS the only interesting thing about Ellen.

  3. Gloria says:

    Finally! Even Stevie Wonder could see she was a lesbian! Who cares! It didn’t talk a rocket scientist!

  4. judy austin says:

    good for robin

  5. Sheila says:

    What I don’t get is, why is this news. I personally don’t care who’s straight or who’s gay. Poeple are people..Love is love… Let’s quit putting labels on everything..

  6. Renelda Moorehad says:

    Well, this is not news, at least not to me. Maybe I am psychic. Here’s what I’m wondering: with this gay explosion, will it be assumed that if you have a friend of the same sex you are sexual partners? I hope not. But as I, along with many others who wished Robin Roberts the best and complete recovery, we are glad to see her back on the job. She is aces at GMA. HAPPY, BLESSED NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!!

  7. Ruth Bronstein says:

    Is this really a new story? Robin and her girlfriend Amber are frequently seen going out to dinner together, and lots of people in New York have known that they were a couple for several years now. If you make an announcement that you’re gay after being openly gay for years, is it really “coming out”?
    I guess it was something Robin felt she wanted to do. Hope you and Amber are doing well, Robin…and that you’re well on the way toward beating that cancer!

  8. From all of us at Tvonthego.com we wish Robin a great new year. I think regardless of her sexual orientation she is a terrific anchor person and we look forward to seeing her on the air at GMA. With more free content available that is quality we can appreciate good content when we see it. Can’t see GMA in the morning then download the Tv On The Go -Pro app to see it in the morning.

  9. timewilltell says:

    I do not see anything in what she wrote about sexual orientation. Long-time girlfriend doesn’t mean partner. I have long-time girlfriends & I can assure you that all of us have completely heterosexual relationships with our husbands. If Robin is saying that she is in a personal relationship with her partner that is her business. Let her say that, don’t start making assumptions or start changing the definitions of words and phrases.

  10. ChamSampion says:

    What a phony, she tells everyone at the end of the year during holiday’s when most people would miss the news thus attempting to protector her public image. She’s a phony, hypocrite. Now the cancer all makes sense. Bad things happen to people we THINK are good but are they really?

  11. Kate Bensema says:

    Don’t care who Robin Roberts loves! She is a strong loving caring person who always seems sincere in everything she says! I like her and wish her nothing but peace , love and good health in the future!

  12. Congrats, happy recovery, and happy coming out! Wishing her better health in the coming year,

  13. reno renee says:

    It just goes to show, america, that they can actually love some one for the person they are and the heart that they have, and NOT what they do behind closed doors.

  14. Jackson says:

    Your wife dying of cancer was not news you moron probably because she wasn’t a public figure or celebrity. Robin Roberts is one of the more beloved figures in American broadcasting, her struggles with her health the past few years was well documented and brave. Any MORE questions????

    • ChamSampion says:

      Actually it was a disgrace for all those “real” people who have to fight serious health conditions without the cameras and extra privileged that one receives from the medical community for being “Elite”. Unless you are on TV or in Politics, you’re falling through the cracks of the healthcare system. Despite Obama’s “Fix”

  15. LaGlorya says:

    I am glad that she came out – she has a platform that not many Lesbians possess. Plus she is a great strong empowering role model of high professional standards. By coming out, Robins contributes to the history and story of what it means to be Gay in the United States.

  16. Sherry says:

    I’m not sure why this important? It must be a very slow day in Hollywood ~ certainly there must be something newsworthy?

    I only wish Robin and Amber the best ~ be happy, life is way too short

    • courtney says:

      Do you….know what news is?

      It’s news because lesbians, especially lesbians of color, are not represented in the media.

      I for one, am so happy for the news. Congrats ladies, and please don’t let stupid comments like this erase your experiences as a couple.

  17. kheller says:

    why does media feel the need to post who is or isn’t gay…we are all people…that’s all that matters…learn to respect and love one another as God loves us and stop categorizing people….I enjoy and like her either way…..straight people never make the news saying “He or she is straight’….so why the big deal either way.

    • That’s because people are all assumed to be straight unless told otherwise. It’s not a big deal because one orientation is better than another, only that one wishes people to know the truth about who they are. I’m sure she had gotten plenty weary of people asking about her boyfriend or husband. By making a simple declaration, that goes away.

      It’s sort of like the frustration I feel sometimes when a checkout clerk hands me a pen in my right hand and turns the credit slip for a right-handed orientation. Like 10% of the population, I have to wrestle the slip out of their hand (while they are trying to be helpful by holding it down) so I can turn it and sign with my left hand. My left-handedness doesn’t make me better or worse than right-handed or ambidextrous people, but I feel a need to tell people I’m left-handed so they take that into consideration in such situations and treat me appropriately.

      The same thing applies to restaurants where waitstaff assume that I should be served from the left so I can use my right hand to take something off a platter. I don’t mind asking to be served from the right, but it’s a nuisance to do it every time the person comes around.

  18. Eleanor Eisenberg says:

    Robin has never denied being gay. When she was a sports reporter in Atlanta, she was frequently seen at a local gay bar that was primarily lesbian-oriented. And she was often seen at dinner with the woman she was dating at the time.

  19. Sweettea71 says:

    Is this really print worthy? I mean if she’s dating Michelle Obama or Oprah then maybe, but even that is a stretch. All the best Robin.

  20. Donna Dias says:

    Well Robin it does not matter to me
    If you are gay I am very Happy that you are winning your battle with cancer. I was very happy to hear that your sister was a match for you.I know that if it was my sister I would hope and pray that I would be a match for her.people tell me about how much pain there is but that would not matter to me saving her life would.

  21. Wow that’s the biggest surprise since Liberace

  22. carol thomas says:

    THANK YOU ROBIN FOR COMING OUT. BLESS YOU ALWAYS AND NOW I WILL WATCH GMA…. HOPE YOUR HEALTH GETS PERFECT AND YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL….. CAROL

  23. Michael Anthony says:

    Regardless of his one feels about same sex relationships, it would be nice if people at least refrained from slang when discussing the subject. You don’t know the woman and shes never harmed you. So, why the Lesbo slang? It diminishes your point and makes you look uneducated. But then. I guess anyone who thinks Obama is Neddy wont grasp thd meaning if anything I’m saying.

  24. Dan Poynter says:

    Robin,
    I am about 10 months behind you.
    Today is Day +153 since my stem cell transplant.

    Sometimes authors search for new topics to write about.
    Occasionally a subject is unexpectedly thrust upon us.
    For me, Chromosome 19 Trisomy was not an ordeal, it was an adventure and an opportunity.

    TRANSPLANT HANDBOOK FOR PATIENTS: Replacing #Stem Cells in Your Bone #Marrow.
    By a 75-year old author, in Day +153 since his transplant, who is setting records for recovery.
    This book helps the #cancer patient, caregiver, and family to understand the #stem cell #transplant journey.
    http://TransplantHandbook.com/

    –Dan Poynter, Author (133 Books), Publisher (Since 1969), Speaker (CSP).

  25. stan says:

    Are there anyone on the planet who didn’t already know this, would anyone be surprise is Hillary come out of the closet, I mean really.

  26. alpha444 says:

    The only thing that is truly important is that Robin is doing well.

  27. Buttons says:

    Good for Robin Roberts. No shocker, but I think it is wonderful she is at this point in her life where she feels comfortable enough to reveal her sexual identity. I also love how she did it in such a casual way. I am so happy for her that she has found someone to share her life with. I am a Christian and I feel very blessed by Him as I know Robin does. I do not agree with the things Phil Robertson has said but I do support the right he has to say them, as I don’t believe he is a hater. As I age, I am making it a point to be more accepting. I am a sinner, so I am unable to judge others. My New Years resolution remains the same… to be a kinder and better person. There are many days I lack these qualities I so wish to exhibit, but I will continue to strive for them!

  28. Marc says:

    Love you, Robin… God Bless you and Good Morning America… xoxo :-)

  29. Geri says:

    guess the duck man is not a fan of GMA.

  30. PattyM says:

    Does anyone else find it annoying that GMA made sure to get rid of Sam Champion before allowing Robin to go public? Were they afraid that having two of their four main anchors out there as part of the LGBT community too much for their viewers, the right, and advertisers?

    • cathy says:

      Unbelievable! Why would you even go there? She and Sam have and always been proffesionals kind and decent people. what does it matter that they are gay? What are you scared off? They have done nothing to you . I am happy for both of them! they are loved for who they are and not because of thei sexual preference.

  31. KarenSev says:

    Cudos to Robin Roberts for finally admitting what we have already known for years! She never ceases to amaze me with her high integrity.

  32. KJ says:

    I’m just glad for Amber. It’s hard to go through so much with a love one just to be push to the side when there are cameras. Family gets all the praise and attention and your contributions mean nothing.

  33. File this under the “Clay Aiken, Lance Bass, Brian Boitano, and other Outings That Came as No Big Surprise” file

  34. jansid says:

    Finally. God Bless! One should never have to hide the loves of their lives.

  35. Chris says:

    Must be a relief for her but this is hardly Page One news. Even on a slow-news Sunday.

  36. Suzanne says:

    GMA has always been #1 to me
    Robin Roberts has always been #1 as a Host & Person!! I’ve never met Robin but I feel like I do know her! She has a Warm Living Spirit that comes they the TV!
    Wishing Robin & GMA continued Success & Happiness! THANKYOU

  37. eschuman says:

    In the comments note above (the one that starts “Comments are moderated,” it says that comments “may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole…” Did the site mean to say “reprinted” instead of “reprinting”?

  38. MichaelZ says:

    WOW! The most shocking “breaking news” revelation since Martina Navratilova came out. Alert the media!

More TV News from Variety

Loading