Many times when public figures are out of the closet, they try to let their fans who may still be in the closet know they are loved and supported by encouraging them to come out. While that message is very uplifting for many, others have pointed out that encouraging a person to come out of the closet when they may not be ready to could be dangerous.
Keiynan Lonsdale, one of the stars of the hit gay teen romance film Love, Simon, is familiar with the feeling of pressure in the closet. The actor and singer only recently came out after being on a supportive, inclusive set and feeling that he was ready.
The star took to Twitter on Thursday to let his fans know that the closet is a scary place, but that coming out is something one has to do on their own terms. “Reminder: As much as we all encourage you to come out & be yourself - it’s gotta be in YOUR time, no one else’s,” Lonsdale wrote. “Don’t feel like you aren’t strong enough if it hasn’t happened yet ... just trust your gut.. it’ll show you when you’re ready.”
Lonsdale also pointed out that living in the closet can create a false narrative for people that they are bad for not being open about their life. “There are a lot of lies when you’re in the closet, & it can make you feel like the worst person in the world - you are not,” he wrote. “You are going through suffering, & you’re just trying to navigate yourself through it. One day you won’t have to lie anymore, & I’m excited for you.”