Former Orange is the new Black actor Samira Wiley explains what it was like to be outed by a fellow cast mate.
While talking on the WNYC Nancy podcast, Wiley opened up about a hard time in her life. The cast mate mentioned her after being asked for a list of out actors in the show’s cast and Wiley says she “wasn’t out at all.” After seeing her name on the list, she admits, “I cried, I cried a lot.”
More specifically, the podcast host asked Wiley, "When you were playing Poussey, to what degree were you out?"
She then responded by saying:
“Someone from my cast, actually, they were doing an interview when they were talking about out gay actors in the cast and they mentioned my name and I saw it in print and I cried, I cried a lot."
“And I, like, tried to get it taken down and, look, I had a journey, you guys, it was not all always super open-hearted and like I’m a gay, gaymo,” she said.
It wasn’t until later getting to know her character that Wiley started to become comfortable with her own sexuality being public knowledge.
“I think falling in love with Poussey, which is a real thing that happened to me, helped me fall in love with myself,” she said.
Now, Wiley is married to show writer Lauren Morelli, but she still cringes at the memory of being outed.
On this National Coming Out Day, remember that the coming out process is entirely personal. We should all be mindful of our peers when it comes to this topic and ask if one is out before ever speaking about their sexualities.
“Everyone’s journey is their own, you should be able to come out on your own terms,” said Wiley.
h/t: WNYC’s Nancy