Ben Platt shares the life-affirming way his parents reacted to him coming out as gay at 12 years old
Ben Platt has opened up about his coming out – and said he hopes all queer youth can have the same “nothing” experience he did.
The Politician star opened up about how he came to tell his parents he was gay when he was 12 years old during his Netflix concert special Ben Platt Live from Radio City Hall.
Platt explained that he grew up in “a very large, very Jewish, very musical family” that was known as the “Von Platt family singers” in their community. So, when he came out, it was “no big deal”.
“Let me walk you through it,” he said.
Ben Platt came out to his parents by phone during a trip to Israel.
“I was in eighth grade, I was on a trip to Israel – like you do in eighth grade when you’re a Jew – and a kid in my class on my bus during the trip made a comment.
“Something to the effect of, ‘Oh, Ben is so lucky because he’s gay, so he gets to hang out with all the girls and they let him be in their hotel rooms and they don’t care’.
“It was not a derogatory thing at all – it wasn’t a bullying thing – it was just true. All my friends were girls and they would let me hang out with them,” he said.
However, the chaperone overheard the conversation and became concerned that Platt was being targeted by homophobic bullies and decided to tell his parents.
— Ben Platt (@BenSPLATT) July 6, 2020
“I was like: ‘Let me not have this be the first time that we discuss this, I don’t want it to come up in this way, I want to get ahead of it.’
“So I went back to my hotel in Tel Aviv, called my parents – I don’t know what time it was for them, but it was important, it doesn’t matter – and I said: ‘I have to tell you something.’
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“And my mom goes: ‘Is this about your sexuality?’ I was like: ‘Let me finish.’
“Basically she said: ‘We know, you spent most of your childhood dressed as Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz, no one is surprised.’ And I was like: ‘Oh that’s great.'”
He added: “And that was really it, and I really wish for everyone in the world, everyone who’s watching at home, everyone here tonight, that it can be that much of a nothing.
“Because it doesn’t need to be an event or an announcement.”