Kit Connor came out as bisexual in an October 2022 Twitter post in which the “Heartstopper” breakout wrote, “Back for a minute. I’m bi. Congrats for forcing an 18 year old to out himself. I think some of you missed the point of the show. Bye.”

Prior to the social media post, Connor had been facing mounting accusations of queerbaiting due to his role as Nick in the popular Netflix coming-of-age series. Connor stars on “Heartstopper” as a high school jock coming to terms with his own bisexuality. The public perception of Connor was that he was a straight actor taking on a queer role (and participating in queer events like pride marches in order to promote the show), so Connor’s own coming out as bisexual was in part to course-correct that false narrative among “Heartstopper” fans.

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In a new interview with British Vogue, Connor clarified his coming out by saying, “I think ‘forced’ isn’t the right word I would use, but I would say that I would have preferred to do it another way. I also don’t know if I would have ever done it. But at the end of the day I don’t regret it. In many ways it was really empowering.”

Connor said that he had been coming to terms with being bisexual before accepting the role of Nick in “Heartstopper.”

“It was just a very natural process for me,” Connor said. “I didn’t really have an ‘oh, shit’ moment. It just became more and more evident.”

Connor’s family was “super accepting and inclusive and wonderful” regarding his bisexuality, but school mates were a different story.

“I was in a very heteronormative atmosphere,” Connor said. “It wasn’t hugely inclusive. It wasn’t really accepted in a lot of ways… It’s the experience of maybe you’re too straight to be gay and you’re too gay to be straight. So it’s like, ‘Where do I sit?’ But I feel much more secure in myself now.”

Connor said his sexuality “wasn’t something I was ready to talk about” as his fame grew amid “Heartstopper” success and fans wanted to know more about his personal life. Regarding the fan pressure, he added, “I wasn’t angry. I was just slightly disappointed by this reaction.”

With “Heartstopper” being such a sensation, Connor is well aware the show will probably follow him around for the rest of his career as an actor. But he’d prefer to lose all labels.

“I’m conscious of the fact I don’t want people to go and watch everything I’m ever in now and go, ‘Oh, it’s Nick from Heartstopper,’” he said. “I also don’t want to be labelled as anything, as a heartthrob or as the queer actor or as this or that. I want to be labelled as an actor who can do different things.”

“Heartstopper” Season 2 debuts Aug. 3 on Netflix.

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