Lauryn and Russell Mark
'Tons' of Gay Olympic Couples? Athletes Say Yes

By Lucas Grindley

Originally published on Advocate.com July 15 2012 11:35 AM ET

Two Australian Olympians who are married have been told they can't room together, and they say that's unfair treatment because of the "tons of gay couples" who can.

Russell and Lauryn Mark are on the Australian shooting team. And they say that normally they room together, but the Herald-Sun reports that the head of mission ordered them to split up or get a hotel outside the Olympic village.

"The stupid part of this, which I have argued to them, is that there are tons of gay couples on the Olympic team who will be rooming together," Russell Mark told the Herald-Sun, "so we are being discriminated against because we are heterosexual."

His wife agreed with that idea.

"I am very frustrated," said Lauryn Mark, according to the Herald-Sun, "because in sport there are a lot of same-sex couples, and it's OK to be partners with someone of the same sex but if you are heterosexual you are penalized."

So who are these "tons" of gay couples in Olympic sports this year? The Advocate has only been able identify a handful of out Olympians who've made it to compete, including Australia's gold-medal winning diver Matthew Mitcham.