Jonathan Bailey recently opened up about his experience growing up as a gay child in the village of Brightwell-cum-Sotwell in Oxfordshire, England.
The 35-year-old English actor recalled how he had an understanding about his sexuality from the age of 11. At the time, awareness and representation on LGBTQ+ issues were practically non-existent, and Bailey said that his village was a place where anyone who was considered “other” was “deemed not acceptable.”
“That’s how I felt growing up, purely on the basis that I wasn’t aware of any gay people around me,” the ‘Fellow Travelers’ star told Gay Times.
He also shared how the scarcity of LGBTQ+ representation around him didn’t give him enough assurance about being gay. According to Bailey,
“The media spun stories that were so negative towards the plight of the gay experience, so I didn’t really have access to anything that made me feel welcome or like I was going to be okay, and I was someone who was very aware of who I was.”
“I talked about it from the age of eleven. I wonder what my life would’ve been like, had there been the vocabulary and ambassadors coming into my school. It would’ve definitely helped me feel more secure and to blossom quicker,” he continued.
The ‘Bridgerton’ actor further expressed:
“For me, that sort of confidence in myself has come later on in life because of not having that.”
Now, Bailey is starring in the series ‘Fellow Travelers’, which highlights LGBTQ+ representation and awareness that would’ve helped him a lot growing up.