Lizzie Marvelly has taken to social media to share with her followers that she is ready to be open about her identity as a bisexual woman.
Posting across Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, Marvelly, 28 and originally from Rotorua, wrote that while she had been honoured to be nominated for the Celebrity Ally Award at the LGBTQI Awards, she wanted to explain why she couldn't accept the nomination.
" ... I feel it's time that I shared the reason why with you. I am bisexual. He takatāpui au... I'm actually a member of the rainbow community," wrote the Weekend Herald columnist.
Marvelly, also a vocal political commentator, singer and founding editor of media outlet Villainesse, revealed in the post that while "it's 2018 and it shouldn't be a big deal ... it hasn't been easy."
She says she didn't register that she was bisexual until her early 20s and over the past few years has "slowly been going through the process of coming out".
Beginning by telling friends, then her family, then colleagues, Marvelly confesses she didn't know if those she loved would be accepting and, beyond that, whether she could deal with "the scrutiny of having my sexuality highlighted in the media".
She acknowledges it took time for her to learn that "being true to myself is important for my wellbeing" and that she is "proud" of who she is and wants "to be open about my identity".
Sharing that she "won't be going into any further detail about her girlfriend" she says she is "very happy".
Comments on her post are ones of congratulations for the former classical music singer, praising her as "brave and bold" with many reiterating the phrase "love is love".