Tom Daley is a doting father to son Robbie, who he welcomed via surrogate in 2018 with his husband Dustin Lance Black. But despite their happy family unit, the couple struggled to deal with the negative reaction from social media trolls at the time of Robbie's birth.
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The 28-year-old diver, who has just won gold in the men's synchronized 10m platform competition at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, reflected on his experience of fatherhood in an interview with The Times last year.
He admitted the homophobic comments came as a "shock", especially since he had always dreamed of becoming a dad.
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Tom said: "It was a shock at the beginning, the negativity. I always desperately wanted children. I’ve been collecting baby clothes for years.
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"I didn't understand why people would mind so much if Lance and I decided to have a child of our own. We'd probably thought about it more than many couples."
Tom is a devoted dad to son Robbie, three
The diving superstar insisted the general public have been lovely to them whenever they're out as a family, however, and he hopes their journey will inspire others to follow their dream of parenthood.
"I don't notice any heckling. I don't even think about being two dads now. It feels very normal. Like any other couple we just want to be the best parents," he added.
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Tom and American scriptwriter Lance wed in May 2017 at Bovey Castle in Devon after a two-year romance.
In early 2018, Tom and Dustin announced the exciting news that they were expecting a baby via surrogate and, in June of that year, the pair welcomed their son, Robert "Robbie" Ray Black-Daley.
Robbie bravely joined his dad on the diving board
The pair are devoted to the little boy and often treat their fans to sweet snippets of their lives together on Tom's Instagram account.
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During training last month, Tom shared some adorable photographs of himself showing Robbie the Olympic pool, including taking him all the way to the top of the diving board.
It seems the youngster could be following in thrill-seeking dad Tom's footsteps. Recalling their conversation, Tom revealed he said: "It’s high up here isn’t it?!," prompting Robbie to reply: "A little bit, but not really!"