Will and Grace star Sean Hayes said mum told him to ‘get therapy’ when he came out
As the second episode of the Will and Grace reprisal returns to our screens this evening, the spotlight has been shone on the actors and their lives to date.
The star, who came out when he was 18, did not receive the reaction he’d hoped for when he told his family he was gay.
“It’s so cliché that it was during Thanksgiving weekend,” Hayes said in an interview with People.
“My mom said I needed to go see a therapist. She wrote me a 10-page letter, both sides on legal pad size paper. ‘This is not what God …’ You know, the whole uneducated view of it.”
Hayes, who opened up about his sexuality in 2010 when the show had stopped airing, said that he wished he had “come out sooner” but was too “overwhelmed” to consider it as an option.
“I was so young,” he said.
“It made me go back in the closet [with the media] because I was so overwhelmed at 26 or 27. I didn’t want the responsibility, I didn’t know how to handle the responsibility of speaking for the gay community. I always felt like I owed them a huge apology for coming out too late.”
Now 47, Hayes said he is happy to be out and proud.
The star has been married to composer Scott Icenogle since 2014, and says he is “happy living a quiet life and being married and boring.”
“If you don’t have the words to explain it to your family, you can say, ‘Like Will & Grace,’ or ‘Like Ellen DeGeneres,’ ” or whosever out in a public,” Hayes said.
“There’s so many more examples now to help people and give them tools to communicate to kids and their families that being gay is as normal as being straight. There’s no difference.”