Late last month model/actor Wentworth Miller came out as a gay man after he refused to attend a film festival in Russia due to their government’s homophobic laws. Today we learn from Miller himself about the struggles he endured as a young closeted gay man. Wentworth was a featured speaker at the Human Rights Campaign Seattle Gala on Saturday night and in his comments to the assembled audience, he opened up about the times that he attempted suicide. Click the embed above to watch video of Wentworth Miller making his comments at the gala Saturday night and then click below to see two more videos from the very same speech.
After publicly announcing he is a gay man, “Prison Break” star Wentworth Miller is opening up about the personal demons he faced before coming out, including a suicide attempt when he was just a teenager. The 41-year-old actor was a special guest at the Human Rights Campaign Seattle Gala on Saturday, Sept. 7. At the podium, Miller discussed his closeted past, revealing he first attempted suicide at just 15 years old. He said in a video from the event, obtained by TMZ:
Growing up I was a target. Speaking the right way, standing the right way, holding your wrist the right way. Every day was a test and there were a thousand ways to fail, a thousand ways to betray yourself, to not live up to someone else’s standards of what was accepted, of what was normal. … The first time I tried to kill myself I was 15. I waited until my family went away for the weekend and I was alone in the house, and I swallowed a bottle of pills. I don’t remember what happened over the next couple of days, but I’m pretty sure come Monday morning I was on the bus back to school, pretending everything was fine. And when someone asks me if that was a cry for help, I’d say, ‘No.’ You only cry for help if you believe there’s help to cry for. And I didn’t need it, I wanted out.
He went on to say that, after becoming famous for his role in the hit Fox series, he had multiple opportunities to come out, but he chose not to “because when I thought about the possibility about coming out, and about how that might impact me and the career I worked so hard for, I was filled with fear.”
This is the EXACT reason why it is so important for high profile people to come out of the closet, when ready. Countless young people endure the same fear and intimidation that Miller faced so I think it’s important for young people to hear these stories so they don’t feel so alone. If Wentworth Miller was driven to the point of suicide, can you imagine what it must feel like for an isolated teen that is terrorized by bullies, school administrators and/or family members? It’s horrific. I applaud Wentworth for coming out and telling his story. By doing so, he might actually save lives. Well done, sir, well done.