Chris Daughtry's Wife Deanna Comes Out as Bisexual: 'This Is Who I Am'

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Deanna Daughtry and Chris Daughtry attend Amazon Studios Golden Globes Party at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on Jan. 10, 2016 in Beverly Hills, Calif. 

In an interview with People magazine, Chris Daughtry's wife Deanna revealed that she identifies as a bisexual woman. The pair said that Deanna had known for years but wasn’t comfortable with her sexuality until recently. “I was hiding and shutting down a part of myself,” she said. “As I built these walls up to protect myself, I was creating a prison, and I couldn’t fully experience life and people couldn’t fully experience me -- and it’s all based on fear.”

Chris said that he knew about his wife’s bisexuality from the moment they started dating, saying he had learned that she had been in a serious relationship with a woman in the past. “I didn’t care,” he said. “I didn’t feel threatened. I wanted her to be happy with who she was and not hide that or be ashamed.”

The pair said that Daughtry’s song “As You Are,” from the singer’s last album Cage to Rattle, served as Deanna’s unofficial coming out. The song’s chorus -- “I love you as you are” -- were words written by Deanna for herself, as she finally learned to accept her bisexuality. “It just felt very real and very honest,” Chris said. “I instantly started hearing the chorus in my head.”

Deanna said that as her husband’s career continued to expand, her struggle with her identity deteriorated until she sought out therapy. Then, in 2015, she decided to write out a set of private lyrics dedicated to self-acceptance. “I really wanted to be vulnerable and say, ‘This is who I am,'” she said. “'I love me. I hope you will love me, but if you don’t, that’s okay because I still have myself, and I do have people that love me as I am, and that’s all I want.'”

She later gave the lyrics to Chris, who then worked them into “As You Are” before playing a demo for Deanna. Now, the pair are re-releasing the song as a single, and taking the opportunity to openly talk about the journey that brought it about. “It’s very important for people to know what the song is about and where it really came from,” Chris said. “Otherwise we’re not being authentic with the song.”

In terms of public reaction, Deanna said that people may not understand her decision to open up about her sexuality, but at the end of the day, they don’t have to. “I understand the fear of ‘what if someone finds out and they’re going to reject me?’” she said. “Those are fears that heterosexual people don’t need to worry about, and I’ve walked it.”

Check out the full interview with Chris and Deanna Daughtry here. Listen to “As You Are” below: