In a recent interview, out actor
Charlie Carver talked about experiencing internalized femmephobia
while growing up.
The 29-year-old Carver is best known
for playing Porter Scavo on ABC's Desperate Housewives and
Ethan on MTV's Teen Wolf. He came out as gay in a 2016
Carver, star of Teen
comes out gay on Instagram.)
He plays the hustler Cowboy in the
Broadway revival of Mart Crowley's 1968 play The Boys in the Band.
The play, which includes gay themes, opens May 31.
After pointing out that toxic
masculinity has kept femmephobia alive and well, The Advocate
asked Carver, “Have you had to deal with that in your real life?”
“I think that that is something I
hope we are beginning to contend with more deliberately and
compassionately now,” Carver
answered. “I experienced a lot of internalized femmephobia
growing up. I kind of grew up at this major inflection point in gay
history where I got to see marriage equality happen as a young
person, state by state and then on a national level. As I've grown up
with these major historical changes, my feelings about myself and my
masculinity have changed and [I’ve] kind of grown with it. I think
what's really exciting about being a young person, about young gay,
queer, LGBTQI+ culture now is this sort of queerification of gender
I hope that it is through things,
whether it's Drag Race or a larger cultural conversation
that's happening that this sort of femmephobia does go away, or
change. … I've experienced some fears on my own taking a look at my
own masculinity, I go, 'How much of this is a construct and how much
of my masculinity is quintessentially me or mine?' I hope that it’s
just an ongoing conversation and that ultimately everybody feels they
are able to express or be exactly as they're meant to,” he said.
Carver added that he was warned that
coming out could ruin his acting career.
“I proudly wear the label of being a
gay man so that somebody else can feel seen through me,” he said.