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23-year-old gold medalist, husband and father David Wise living 'alternative lifestyle'?

Published: Tuesday, Sept. 1 2015 6:30 p.m. MDT

David Wise with his wife Alexandra and daughter Nayeli after winning a gold medal at the X-Games that took place January, 2014 in Aspen, CO. (David Wise Instagram account) David Wise with his wife Alexandra and daughter Nayeli after winning a gold medal at the X-Games that took place January, 2014 in Aspen, CO. (David Wise Instagram account)

David Wise is 23 years old, a freestyle skier and, as of Tuesday, an Olympic gold medalist. But he'll be the first to tell you he's much more than that. He's also a Christian, a husband and a father of a 2-year-old daughter, Nayeli.

After Wise's gold-medal performance, NBC reporter Skyler Wilder posted a feature on the athlete's lifestyle, which Wilder indicates is unusual.

"David Wise is at the top of his sport. He’s always smiling among his friends and competitors, however, he’s not like the rest of the field. He is mature," Wilder wrote in his piece "David Wise's alternative lifestyle leads to Olympic gold."

"At such a young age, Wise has the lifestyle of an adult. He wears a Baby Bjorn baby carrier around the house. He also attends church regularly and says he could see himself becoming a pastor a little later down the road."

David Wise, of the United States, reacts after competing in the men's ski halfpipe final at the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park, at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014, in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia. Wise won the gold medal. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) (Jae C. Hong, ASSOCIATED PRESS) David Wise, of the United States, reacts after competing in the men's ski halfpipe final at the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park, at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014, in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia. Wise won the gold medal. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) (Jae C. Hong, ASSOCIATED PRESS)

While Wise's family situation is different than that of most Olympic athletes, many disagree with NBC's choice to identify the young father as living an "alternative lifestyle."

"Isn’t it fascinating that NBC views a man taking care of his wife and daughter as an alternative lifestyle?" Mollie Hemingway wrote on The Federalist website.

"I’m glad David Wise won gold, but if this is any indication of media views on normalcy, our society is pretty much doomed."

Many expressed similar opinions on Twitter after reading Wilder's article.

United States Olympic Winter Games freeskier David Wise and his daughter Nayeli pose for a portrait at the 2013 Team USA Media Summit on Monday, October 1, 2013 in Park City, UT. (Carlo Allegri, AP) United States Olympic Winter Games freeskier David Wise and his daughter Nayeli pose for a portrait at the 2013 Team USA Media Summit on Monday, October 1, 2013 in Park City, UT. (Carlo Allegri, AP)

Political reporter David Weigel shared his opinion of the NBC headline in his post on Slate.

"The headline is either ironic or ridiculous, true, but if it's irony, it's contextual," Weigel wrote. "Reporter Skyler Wilder is suggesting that Wise breaks a stereotype, because 'the rest of his competitors are hanging with their friends, traveling the world searching for endless winter, hitting the party scenes accustom to their action sports lifestyles.'"

David Wise of Reno, Nevada member of the U.S. Freeskiing Team and his daughter, Nayeli Grace Wise, play around in his new competition uniform from The North Face, Monday, January, 20, 2014 in Aspen, CO. (Nathan Bilow, Invision for The North Face) David Wise of Reno, Nevada member of the U.S. Freeskiing Team and his daughter, Nayeli Grace Wise, play around in his new competition uniform from The North Face, Monday, January, 20, 2014 in Aspen, CO. (Nathan Bilow, Invision for The North Face)

Regardless of how his lifestyle is classified, Wise has continued to speak about the importance of his family. The athlete traveled to Sochi with his wife, Alexandra, but chose to leave their daughter in the care of family back home in Reno, Nev.

"Almost the first thing I saw when I finished my first run was this little face smiling back to me," Wise told the "Today" show. "I could just feel her spirit cheering for me and my family there supporting me."

Family captured and shared Wise's daughter seeing her dad receive his gold medal on TV.

Wise says his family puts his other pursuits into perspective.

"I think my lifestyle — the fact that I have a little girl to take care of and a wife — really takes the pressure off of my skiing because first and foremost I have to be a good husband and father," Wise told NBC.

David Wise and his daughter Nayeli in a photo from 2013. (David Wise Instagram account) David Wise and his daughter Nayeli in a photo from 2013. (David Wise Instagram account)

It seems Wise was eager to share his experiences as a family man long before the Olympics began. Last December, Wise posted a photo highlighting his packed car, full of Pampers, using the hashtag #familyproblems.

Email: spetersen@deseretnews.com

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