Matt Bomer recently sat down with Andrew Rannells and OUT Magazine to give his take on the coming out process.
Before telling his family, Matt first came out to himself while performing in Romeo and Juliet and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at the Utah Shakespeare Festival.
"I remember someone there who was a hair and makeup artist who I found really inspiring," said Matt. "I thought, ‘If this person can live their truth, what am I doing?'"
Although Matt was dating a girl in his company at the time, he knew it was time to his true self.
"I thought she was really cool and talented, frankly. I just wanted to hang out with her. And then I just thought it was time to live my life truthfully," the White Collar actor said.
The Golden Globe winner grew up in Webster Groves, Mo—the heart of the Bible Belt—so it was no surprise that Matt received over six months of silence from his family after sending them a letter sharing he is gay.
"I wrote a letter to my parents. I would have lost my sense of direction if I tried to do it in person," said Matt. "There was radio silence for a long, long time, at least six months."
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"Oh, Jesus. That is a long time," Andrew responded.
Matt—who wasn't even allowed to watch secular TV growing up—finally made a trip home. The visit resulted in a huge fight, but surprisingly took a turn for the better.
"We got that out of the way, and we got down to the business of figuring out how to love each other."
While it didn't happen over night, Matt and his family learned to appreciate and love each other.
"I would say within a matter of years we started to figure it out. It was a struggle," said the American Horror Story: Hotel actor. "It's a struggle for anybody to take their paradigms and set of beliefs and understandings and completely flip the script. So I'm empathetic toward everyone."
Although the years of struggle couldn't have been easy, they have surely paid off. Matt's mother recently asked him, his husband Simon Halls, and his kids to speak to her women's group in Houston.
"I'm here to tell people it can get better. Because I had so many people in my life saying, ‘You need to get rid of all expectations — you need to cut them out.' But I was like, ‘They're my family.'"