Thomas Dekker, known best for roles in “Heroes” and “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles,” came out as gay Thursday and revealed that he was married.
“My sexual orientation once again came into question this week when a prominent gay man used an awards acceptance speech to ‘out’ me. While he did not mention me by name, the explicit details of his reference made it easy for the public and media to connect the dots,” the 29-year-old actor wrote on Twitter.
“While it is an odd situation, I thank him because it presents a prime opportunity for me to publicly say that I am indeed a man who proudly loves other men. In fact, this April, I married my husband and I could not be happier.”
Dekker didn’t name the man, but last week, “Hannibal” creator Bryan Fuller spoke about a gay actor on “Heroes” who wasn’t allowed to be gay on the show.
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“I had a brief stint on Heroes where the gay character was ‘hetwashed’ after the actor’s management threatened to pull him from the show if he — the character, not the actor — were gay,” Fuller said at Outfest, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
“The character became straight and the actor came out as gay.”
Fuller served as a co-executive producer for most of the first season of “Heroes,” the same season in which Dekker played Zach, Claire Bennet’s (Hayden Panettiere) high school friend who discovered her secret powers.
“I have never lied to the press about the fluidity of my sexuality but this man claiming that I came out is not true. Because I have not ‘officially’ until this moment. I simply refuse to be robbed of the glorious joy that belongs to me. To say the words myself. ‘I’m gay.’ Those words are a badge of honor that no one can steal,” Dekker wrote.
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“Sexuality and who you love is a deeply personal and complicated thing. For some of us, it takes time to cultivate, discover and conclude. It is not something anyone should ever be ashamed of and certainly not something anyone should be rushed into.”
In 2011, Dekker, who recently appeared in the short-lived “Backstrom,” told Out magazine that he’d only had relationships with women but wasn’t “closed” to a gay relationship.
Thursday, however, after Fuller’s not-so-subtle outing, was the first time Dekker had addressed his sexuality publicly.
“I agree with many who believe it is an important responsibility for LGBTQ persons with a platform to come out. It has the power to change minds, challenge beliefs and make others feel understood and supported. It can strengthen the progression of our community and help disarm those who discriminate against us. It is a brave, powerful and important thing to do but it is also a deeply personal decision. One that should only be made when you are ready,” he wrote on Twitter.
“If we are to stand strong in the gay community, our mission should be support, not exclusion; love, not shame. I choose not to look back on the past with a regretful heart but rather focus on the future with a hopeful one. A future where myself and all others can feel free to express their true selves with honor and dignity.
“I embrace you, any of you, with open arms, kindness, faith and patience. For all of you who have supported me, before and now, I thank you from the bottom of my fledgling heart. Be proud of who you are. No matter how long it takes.”
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