Awhile back, Colton Haynes was a rising star, making a name for himself on television in such shows as MTV’s Teen Wolf and CW’s Arrow, while also building up his own brand on the social media circuit, garnering massive followings on Tumblr, Twitter, and Instagram. There seemed to be no stopping Haynes, until the pressures of pretending to be straight came to a head and he felt he had to take a step back. Coming out of the closet relieved some of that stress, and many of Colton’s fans were accepting with him, knowing he is gay, but Haynes now reveals that not everyone could embrace him, and his confession ended with tragic results in some cases.
Colton Haynes Learned About His Father’s Suicide While Living On The Streets
Colton Haynes only recently revealed his LGBT orientation to fans, but, as Teen Vogue shares, he came out to family and close friends many years ago. The future Teen Wolf actor was only 14 years old when he revealed the secret he had been hiding, and the result was far worse than he had expected. Haynes says he was bullied at school, with his older brother having to serve as a bodyguard more often than not, leaving him feeling humiliated and depressed.
Haynes ran away from home, hoping to escape the trauma his confession had created, but the situation only grew darker for the Haynes family. The would-be actor had been out on his own for three weeks before he heard of his father’s suicide.
“I was told that my dad killed himself because he found out I was gay,” Colton recalls. “So, of course, I lost it and was like, ‘How could you say something like that?'”
Whether or not that was his father’s motivation for pursuing suicide will forever remain a mystery. As Haynes shares in his painfully honest interview, there wasn’t the expected suicide note. Just a picture.
“And no one will ever really know the truth. But my brother and my mom went to pick up my dad’s stuff, and the only picture on his fridge was my eighth-grade graduation picture. So I was just like, ‘F—‘.”
For Teen Wolf‘s Colton Haynes, Hiding In The Closet Came With Its Own Curses
Colton’s early experiences with coming out as gay may have influenced him in the way he dealt with his sexuality in the future, because the Arrow actor kept things low key as he grew in popularity in Hollywood and on the internet. That’s not to say he deliberately hid his orientation, but Haynes didn’t go out of his way to tell many people. There were some, co-stars on Teen Wolf and Arrow, who knew that Colton was a part of the LGBT community, but most people assumed he was straight and, as Haynes told Out magazine, he was happy enough to play the part of a straight man.
Pretending to be straight and essentially hiding who he was didn’t come without a price. Haynes says that keeping the secret created so much stress that it soon manifested itself with physical and psychological ailments, including anxiety, fainting spells, physical illness, and even an ulcer. Those conditions, combined with finding out that his partner of six years had been cheating on him, came together to force Colton to take a break and really look after himself.
“I had a complete mental breakdown,” says Mr. Haynes.
The Arrow actor took a break from his career and started seeing a therapist, which is a decision Colton now says was “the greatest thing that’s ever happened to me”.
Now, Colton is ready to return to the spotlight and he has already been cast to return to Arrow for Season 5. In addition to acting, Mr. Haynes hopes to serve as a role model for those in the LGBT community who may need guidance or just someone to serve as the voice of experience.
[Image by Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for John Varvatos]