Actor Neil Patrick Harris has defended the right of everyone, particularly those in the public eye, to come out on their own terms.

In an interview with HuffPost Live, the How I Met Your Mother star who came out as gay in 2006, said that it is wrong to expect all gay celebrities to come out at once, as coming out is a personal experience.

He said: “I don’t think [coming out] in an exploitative way makes sense. I just feel like that whole world is very personal,

“Here’s a good analogy – if you’re going to jump into the pool and you’re not sure how to swim, it’s probably not so effective to just push someone into the pool … It’s probably not the best way.”

Speaking of his own coming out story, he said he was concerned at how it would affect his now fiance David Burka.

“I didn’t want to disrespect David,” he continued. “I didn’t want to make David feel like he didn’t exist in my life and at the same time I didn’t want David’s identity to be, ‘The guy that’s dating me.’ It’s a very individual thing.”

Harris and Burka announced their engagement in 2011, and are parents to twins, Harper and Gideon.

Gay rights advocate Harris, earlier this year introduced a television broadcast of the Harvey Milk biopic, ‘Milk’, in order to mark the first day of Gay Pride month.