Former Desperate Housewives star Charlie Carver has opened up about his sexuality and "come out" as gay.
The actor, 27, has played gay characters onscreen, but in a series of lengthy and candid Instagram posts on Monday (11Jan16), he spoke publicly about his own sexuality for the first time.
Charlie posted a photo of a quote which reads: "Be who you needed when you were younger", a phrase which stuck out to him in more ways than one.
"As a young boy, I knew I wanted to be an actor. I knew I wanted to be a lot of things!," he wrote. "It was around that age that I also knew, however abstractly, that I was different from some of the other boys in my grade. Over time, this abstract 'knowing' grew... ending in a climax of saying three words out loud: 'I am gay.'"
He continued, "I was 12. It would take me a few years before I could repeat them to anyone else, in the meantime turning the phrase over and over in my mouth until I felt comfortable and sure enough to let the words pour out again, this time to my family... For me, and my family, it was a precious conversation, one where I felt that I’d begun to claim myself, my life, and what felt like the beginning of a very-adult-notion of my own Authenticity."
But Charlie noted that once he and twin brother Max landed their big breaks on the hit drama, he had to "bisect" himself into a public and private persona, making his relationship with his sexuality even more complicated.
"I did not want to be defined by my sexuality," Charlie wrote. "Sure, I am a proud gay man, but I don’t identify as a Gay man, or a GAY man, or just gay. I identify as a lot of things, these various identifications and identities taking up equal space and making up an ever-fluid sense of Self."
He went on to note that he "hadn't really ever been "in", adding, "I tried to live as authentically as I've known how to, as a gay guy, since that concept became available to me, only once or twice intentionally dodging the ever ill-timed question with the subtext that might have as well read 'ARE YOU GAY???' I've lived 'out', not feeling the need to announce so. I was comfortably out in my private life. And for a time, that was enough."
Charlie wrapped up his message by sharing his hope that his "coming out" will help others who can relate to his struggle as much as it has helped himself.
"Let the record show this - I self-identify as gay," he wrote. "Does that really matter anymore? As a young man, I needed a young man in Hollywood to say that - and without being a d**k about it, I owe it to myself, more than anything, to be who I needed when I was younger."
At the end of his post, he joked, "And let the record show my twin brother is just as cool for being straight."