Kit Connor confirmed this week that he is bisexual, but said his announcement was not of his own accord.
The British actor ― who plays Nick Nelson, a young athlete coming to terms with his sexuality on Netflix’s LGBTQ-inclusive teen series “Heartstopper”― quit Twitter last month amid fervent social media discourse about his private life.
Connor, 18, expressed his frustration with the online speculation when he returned to the social media platform Monday.
“Back for a minute,” he tweeted. “I’m bi. congrats for forcing an 18 year old to out himself. i think some of you missed the point of the show. bye.”
Connor didn’t specify what may have forced him to publicly address his sexuality. In recent months, the actor has been accused of “queerbaiting,” or pandering to fans by leaning into the belief that they identify as LGBTQ in real life.
Other stars, including Charlie Puth and Harry Styles, have faced similar allegations. The criticisms leveled against Connor, however, intensified in August when he was spotted holding hands with actor Maia Reficco, his co-star in the forthcoming movie “A Cuban Girl’s Guide to Tea and Tomorrow.”
“I’m perfectly confident and comfortable in my sexuality, but ... I’m not too big on labels and things like that,” he told podcaster Josh Smith in May. “I don’t feel like I need to label myself, especially not publicly.”
By Tuesday morning, Connor’s announcement had drawn major support from fans, as well as from his “Heartstopper” cohorts.
“You owe nothing to anyone,” tweeted actor Joe Locke, who plays Nick’s boyfriend, Charlie Spring. “I’m so proud of you my friend.”
“I truly don’t understand how people can watch Heartstopper and then gleefully spend their time speculating about sexualities and judging based on stereotypes,” creator and showrunner Alice Oseman tweeted. “I hope all those people are embarrassed as FUCK. Kit you are amazing.”