In an Instagram post, actor Connor
Jessup announced that he's gay.
The 25-year-old Jessup is best known
for playing Ben Mason on TNT's Falling Skies and for his roles
in the ABC anthology series American Crime.
In his post, Connor said that he knew
he was gay at 13 but kept it a secret.
“I knew I was gay when I was
thirteen, but I hid it for years,” Connor captioned a photo of
himself. “I folded it and slipped it under the rest of my emotional
clutter. Not worth the hassle. No one will care anyway. If I can just
keep making it smaller, smaller, smaller.... My shame took the form
of a shrug, but it was shame. I’m a white, cis man from an
upper-middle class liberal family. Acceptance was never a question.
But still, suspended in all this privilege, I balked. It took me
years. It’s ongoing. I’m saying this now because I have
conspicuously not said it before.”
He said he decided to come out publicly
because he does not want to be “complicit” in “the idea that
being gay is a problem to be solved or hushed.”
“I’ve been out for years in my
private life, but never quite publicly. I’ve played that tedious
game. Most painfully, I’ve talked about the gay characters I’ve
played from a neutral, almost anthropological distance, as if they
were separate from me. These evasions are bizarre and embarrassing to
me now, but at the time they were natural. Discretion was default,
and it seemed benign. It would be presumptuous to assume anyone would
care, yeah? And anyway, why should I have to say anything? What right
do strangers have to the intimate details of my life? These and other
background whispers – new, softer forms of the same voices from
when I was thirteen, fourteen, fifteen.... Shame can come heavy and
loud, but it can come quiet too; it can take cover behind comfort and
convenience. But it’s always violent. For me, this discretion has
become airless. I don’t want to censor – consciously or not –
the ways I talk, sit, laugh, or dress, the stories I tell, the jokes
I make, my points of reference and connection. I don’t want to be
complicit, even peripherally, in the idea that being gay is a problem
to be solved or hushed.”
He added that he was “grateful” to
be gay and wished his followers a happy Pride.
“I’m grateful to be gay. Queerness
is a solution. It’s a promise against cliche and solipsism and
blandness; it’s a tilted head and an open window. I value more
everyday the people, movies, books, and music that open me to it. If
you’re gay, bi, trans, two-spirit or questioning, if you’re
confused, if you’re in pain or you feel you’re alone, if you
aren’t or you don’t: You make the world more surprising and
bearable. To all the queers, deviants, misfits, and lovers in my
life: I love you. I love you. Happy Pride!” he concluded.
Jessup will play Tyler Locke in
Netflix's upcoming drama Locke & Key.