YouTube personality Connor Franta has come out as gay in a very candid, honest video he posted to his YouTube channel today (Dec. 8), which you can check out above.

In it, Connor opens up about his sexuality and the difficulty he had of coming to terms with the fact that he is gay. He says coming from a small town in the midwest made it more difficult for him to accept the fact that he was attracted to men, and in order to deal with it he simply ignored it: “I tried to avoid it by dating girls.”

Sadly, he became heavily depressed during his sophomore year of college and could no longer ignore it: “I was up all night for, I can’t tell you how many nights, just thinking, looking at the ceiling, thinking about this.”

The worst part is he couldn’t even admit it to himself: “I felt so isolated, because I had this secret that I couldn’t even talk to myself about, let alone other people.”

Things began to turn around for Connor about a year ago, when he realized his secret was consuming him and making it difficult for him to live a happy life. He tried to force himself to admit that he was gay: “One year ago, I kept trying to get myself to look in the mirror and say it. I was tired of running, of hiding who I truly was, so I just tried to say it. And I couldn't say it. My mouth could not utter the words until one time I did, and I felt a mixture of every emotion possible.”

From there on, he went through the terrifying process of telling those closest to him that he was gay — not an easy feat when you aren’t sure how someone may react. Thankfully, Connor's family and friends have been nothing but supportive and he recognizes just how lucky he is to have so many people in his life who  love him for who he is.

Connor goes on to cite the Internet and the many videos of people coming out as gay as the reason he was finally able to post his own video. He says: "I'm making this video for anyone who needs it. It’s okay. It may not seem like it right now, but you are gonna be fine. I know it's scary, but don't be afraid. You are who you are, and you should love that person. I don't want anyone to have to go through 22 years of their life afraid to accept that.”

We commend you, Connor, on what we can only imagine was an incredibly difficult, but incredibly brave decision to make.