EXCLUSIVE: CMT Star Cody Alan on Coming Out as Gay: 'I'm Glad This Day Finally Got Here'

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Cody Alan was ready.

The CMT star shared a heartfelt message to Instagram on Thursday, using the new year as an opportunity to make the big announcement about who he is and loves.

"2017. As we start a new year, there is something I want to share with you. You see, I’m gay," the 31-year-old TV host wrote. "This is not a choice I made, but something I've known about myself my whole life."

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"Through life's twists and turns, marriage, divorce, fatherhood, successes, failures - I've landed on this day, a day when I'm happier and healthier than I’ve ever been. And I’m finally comfortable enough for everyone to know this truth about me," he explained. "Thanks for following me and supporting me over the years. As we continue our journey, I hope this news won't change how you see me. I’m still the same Cody I always was. You just know a little more about me now."

"My hope for the future is to live the most honest, authentic, loving, and open life possible," Alan added. "Here's to being happy with yourself, no matter who you are, who you love, where you come from, or what cards life has dealt you."

MORE: Anderson Cooper on Coming Out: 'By Not Saying Something, I Was Saying Something'

After the announcement, Alan openly discussed the decision with ET, revealing that it's been in the works for quite some time.

"It’s an agonizing thing to figure out exactly how you’re going to say it, and yet, it may have been the easiest, most natural thing I’ve ever written because it felt so real to me," Alan said. "This comes from the realest, most true part of my heart, that it really felt like it came together almost like a song to some degree."

"I deal with songwriters and people in country music all the time who are writing lyrics, and I would never put my talents at their level, but to some degree, when writing this, it just felt like it flowed without a whole lot of agonizing," he continued.

"It’s been a long time coming," Alan noted. "I’m glad this day finally got here."

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Alan also revealed to ET that his family has known his sexuality for quite some time, and that his teenage daughter and son, were the most understanding.

"To my kids, being gay to them is kind of like an eye color. They just understand that it’s there," he shared. "It went a lot better than I thought it would. I thought it would disappoint them in some way with my news, but they were both very encouraging."

Still, Alan held off on coming out publicly until his family was ready.

"It’s been some time now," he said. "But I really wanted to wait to share my news with everyone until I was sure that they were ready also for me to come out. That’s the most important thing of all -- is them. Your family is what matters the most. I really wanted to be sure that everyone was sort of prepared for this moment."

Since coming out, Alan has already received a flurry of love and support on social media.

"When you announce something like this, you just hope it’s received in the best way possible," he explained. "So to feel the outpouring of warmth and love from the country music world has been awesome."

"CMT has been nothing but supportive," Cody added. "They’ve been awesome and completely helpful to me every step of the way. I’m really grateful for their support."

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Meanwhile, GLAAD praised Alan's announcement in a statement to ET, saying, "Millions of radio listeners, television viewers and country music fans love and look up to Cody Alan. And that’s exactly why Cody’s decision to come out matters — because visibility brings about acceptance."

"By sharing his story, Cody is helping listeners and fans get to know someone who shares their passion for country music and southern values, and who also happens to be gay," the organization added. "At a time when America can sometimes seem so divided, it’s the common ground we all share that brings us together, and that’s the power of sharing one’s story."

Congratulations to Alan for sharing his story!

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Additional reporting by Brendon Geoffrion.

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