Former "Heroes" star Thomas Dekker came out as both gay and married on Thursday night, while accusing showrunner Bryan Fuller of outing him during an Outfest speech earlier this month.
"My sexual orientation once again came into question this week when a prominent gay man used an awards acceptance speech to 'out' me," Dekker wrote in a lengthy Twitter note. "While he did not mention me by name, the explicit details of his reference made it easy for the public and media to connect the dots."
During an acceptance speech at Outfest, Fuller said he "had a brief stint on 'Heroes' where the gay character was 'het-washed' after the actor's management threatened to pull him from the show if he — the character, not the actor — were gay." Though not mentioning Dekker by name, he added, "The character became straight and the actor came out as gay."
Watch Fuller's speech below. His comments regarding Dekker start around the 4:25 mark.
While both Dekker and Fuller have spoken out about the controversy over Dekker's character in the past, the actor himself had never actually come out. Speaking to OUT about his sexuality in 2011, he said, "I've only really had relationships with women, but I'm certainly not closed to it."
Dekker went on to call Fuller's speech and the predicament it placed him in as an "odd situation," before adding he wishes to "thank him because it presents a prime opportunity for me to publicly say that I am indeed a man who proudly loves other men. In fact, this April, I married my husband and I could not be happier."
"I have never lied to the press about the fluidity of my sexuality but this man claiming that I came out is not true," he continued. "Because I have not 'officially' until this moment. I simply refuse to be robbed of the glorious joy that belongs to me. To say the words myself. 'I'm gay'. Those words are a badge of honor that no one can steal. Sexuality and who you love is a deeply personal and complicated thing. For some of us, it takes time to cultivate, discover and conclude. It is not something anyone should ever be ashamed of and certainly not something anyone should be rushed into."
He went on to speak about gay representation in the media and how celebrities can help.
"I agree with many who believe it is an important responsibility for LGBTQ persons with a platform to come out. It has the power to change minds, challenge beliefs and make others feel understood and supported," he wrote. "It can strengthen the progression of our community and help disarm those who discriminate against us. It is a brave, powerful and important thing to do but it is also a deeply personal decision. One that should only be made when you are ready."
"If we are to stand strong in the gay community, our mission should be support, not exclusion; love, not shame," he went on. "I choose not to look back on the past with a regretful heart but rather focus on the future with a hopeful one. A future where myself and all others can feel free to express their true selves with honor and dignity. I embrace you, any of you, with open arms, kindness, faith and patience. For all of you who have supported me, before and now, I thank you from the bottom of my fledgling heart. Be proud of who you are. No matter how long it takes."