Hello &

Hello &

Wentworth Earl Miller III

Wentworth Earl Miller III

V.I.P.

V.I.P.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Mailbag (9.1) (Answers)!




WENTWORTH MILLER·THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 2018

Excellent questions. As always. FYI, this may be it for now. I've got a full plate ATM. If there's an opportunity to return for seconds, I will. Until then. - W.M.

* * * * *

How are you doing?

Well.

When you answer the questions Wentworth

Now.

How do you feel about dumplings?

I'm in favor.

Do you ever wish for a cigarette?

From time to time.

What is your shoe size?

Changing.

could you have imagined a career as a musician / singer?

Yes.

Who has offered you the most support and encouragement in your life?

Me.

Any advice to a young writer?

Write what you'd want to read.

Why did you remove your last update about ‘speaking your truth’?

That post was spur of the moment. For the moment. Then it was over.

do you think it’s possible to write about a process your character is going through (in a story/book you’re creating) and in doing so go through that process yourself? Even if it’s not something you’re passively or actively dealing with (or have to deal with at all).

Yes. And be careful. Personally, I find it all-too-easy to empathize/enmesh with fictional characters, whether created by strangers or myself.

And we may THINK we're writing about something we're not "passively or actively dealing with," but I suspect our unconscious (subconscious?) enjoys guiding us, for reasons known only to itself, toward designated people/situations/subjects. I may not even be aware I've got some closeted sh-t that needs outing until I start putting it into words. I'm like, "I'm writing fiction!" My fiction is like, "Oh? I'm writing you."

That - as far as I'm concerned - is territory worth exploring. AND it's important to practice self-care, in any creative process. To leave a trail of breadcrumbs. So you can find your way home.

How do you remain positive, when things are going against you..?

I don't (typically) use language like "remaining" or "staying positive." There's negative in the world like there is negative in me. Edge. Dark currents. I don't see the value in pretending otherwise. Ignoring it/them. I think it's unhealthy. In the long-term. I prefer to identify the negative and deal with it. Which might look like leaving it alone. Giving it respect and space. Sometimes the negative (in me) just wants to be acknowledged. Sometimes I'll say, out loud, to myself, "Okay... Okay, bitterness... I see you... I see you and I'm getting out of bed. I've got a million things to do." I'm not denying what's true for me. AND I need to get sh-t done.

KEEP CALM & CARRY ON (or whatever) doesn't resonate with me. CRY IN THE CAR & PICK UP THE DRY CLEANING resonates more.

I guess I've wanted to know could you see much out of the 'new' (ie most recent) Captain Cold glasses ?

Imagine a black screen... Now imagine a hole in the screen the width of a wooden ruler laid on its side... Now hang fake fur over it... Now look through the hole... There's Dom! Or is it Franz? Who can tell? Wait for them to say something. Then you'll know for sure.

Hello Wentworth, I have PTSD, Depression, Anxiety, Panic, & Agoraphobia disorders. Can you tell me when you were at your worst, what was a quick go to "tool" / "coping skill" that helped you keep going. Like what would you do or tell yourself that truly helped get you out of the moment and back into the progression of fighting the battle & healing. I hope that makes sense. Thank You

During one stretch, when I was at "my worst," a "tool" that kept me going was my DVR. I didn't have Netflix (still don't) and had to wait week to week to watch my favorite TV shows. NO WAY was I going to off myself before the season finale of TOP CHEF. As if. #TeamCarla
And while I was sticking around to see how it all turned out (on TV), I was giving myself time. And a chance. To change. Grow. Heal. Shift. Even slightly. A chance I may not have gotten if I hadn't been waiting week to week.

Perhaps the moral of the story is: Stop binge watching. Practice delayed gratification. Give yourself something to look forward to. Another reason - however small - to tough it out.

have you read The Afterlife of Billy Fingers by Annie Kagan?

I have not. I'll look into it. Currently I'm reading Music For Chameleons by Truman Capote. Some of it is... "of its time" (a polite way to put it). But I'm enjoying it.

I’m curious about your portrayal of Leo, or Citizen Cold from Earth-X in the Arrowverse. You’ve expressed disdain for being called “sweet” or having the idea of “gay best friend” applied to you. And I don’t believe that you are your characters, nor either are they you, though a part of you may be in each of them and vice versa. But Leo is, among other things… sweet. And I’m thinking of one scene in particular in Legends of Tomorrow where he has an arguably “gay best friend” interaction with White Canary... he gives her romantic advice and even goes so far as to say that he’s “Gay, not blind.” So I’m curious how much of Leo’s personality may have been imposed on you from the outside, from writers and directors who wanted to see the character a particular way and make the fangirls squee and tune in next week, and how much of him came from you and how you wanted to portray him... I wonder if you were enjoying playing up the campiness or chafing under attributes that you have specifically mentioned are so often used to be dismissive of gay men. Or both/and.

Love this line of inquiry. My thoughts (in no particular order)...

1. The only person who gets to call Leo "sweet" is his sweetie. Everyone else risks frostbite.

2. How about we look for alternatives to the word? That don't come with a side of corn syrup? 
"Considerate." "Thoughtful." "Gentle." "Supportive." "Sensitive." "Kind."
I can be all those things. So can Leo.

3. Leo is a guest star. He's there to service the main characters/series regulars. Left-of-center is his place - and his approach - in the story. AND I have issues with Hollywood not centering queer characters and THEIR stories. AND it's not THE LEO SHOW. Both/and.

Queer characters garnishing straight ones - always the side dish, never the main - is not okay. AND, in the meantime, while shift happens (and I believe it is), we do what we can with what we have. Remember, in the crossover, when Leo says to White Canary, "Give it time... I'll get through that crusty exterior?" Originally he said that to Green Arrow. I read it, thought, "No offense to Stephen (whom I respect)... why would Leo give a f-ck about Arrow? Why would he choose to puzzle that puzzle? Their relationship goes nowhere... Also, Canary is standing right there." She and Snart had history. And like Leo, she's queer. Redirecting Leo's attention toward Canary felt like a natural shift. Hence the added line ("I was talking to you").

That moment was then chosen by the CW as a button for one of the crossover teaser-trailers. Which was validating. Like the agreement Caity and I made to really claim our time onscreen together, make it (more) about us (and Snart), resonated beyond me and Caity.

We do what we can with what we have.

4. As far as Leo being "camp," as written, he's pretty "straight." I made choices that felt right, necessary, and amusing (to me). I wasn't worried about "giving people what they want." Not the powers-that-be, not the audience. If they dug it, awesome. If they didn't, that worked too. But the buck stopped (or stops) with me.

I love when you talk about your men’s group and the things you’ve learned from them. How does one go about finding a good support group? I’d love to find one in my area for women, but googling and asking my GP hasn’t really given me much info

There are (IMO) differences between a "men's group" and a "support group." The former may function as the latter, but that's not its sole purpose. If Google isn't generating anything local and/or helpful to you, you may have to start your own. Scary, but people do it. Check out orgs like Woman Within International (an affiliate of The ManKind Project). Send emails. Ask for advice re: starting a group. Or, if that's daunting, start a different, less intense (potentially) group that can one day foster the kind of group you have in mind. A book club. A nature club. Once that's up and running, and you've met people you connect with, create a separate circle to address more serious themes/issues. Begin with a handful, invite more over time, see what happens. My hunch is most of these orgs started small. They began in someone's living room.

Hey there, I'm coping with the most things in my life through writing. However, I'm sometimes really overwhelmed and can't find any proper words, which leaves me stuck in this room of too many feelings, simultaneously too less and in a hurricane of thoughts. How can I stay in the eye of the storm to see everything from a different point of view and finally find words?

Abandon words. Start a rock garden. Start a Japanese rock garden. Climb a wall. Split wood. Build a sandcastle. Smash a sandcastle. Paint. Spray paint. Spray paint an old chair. Visit a museum. Buy a postcard in the gift shop. Tuck it in a mirror. Reorganize your books. Knock them to the floor. Kick them across the room. Grab a pen. Write a sentence. See if anything's changed. If not, abandon words. Start a rock garden.

My question is, what do you think is one of the most important things educators should teach or continue to teach our young kids regarding mental health?

Empathy. We should be teaching kids empathy. Emotional intelligence. If we did, IMO, there'd be a lot less to teach them about mental health because a lot less people would be suffering from mental health issues. (Or suffering in silence. Or more than necessary.)

Does something still feel like it’s missing?

If I made a list of Everything I Don't Have, it'd be a long one. Same as the next person. But do I truly believe, in my heart of hearts, I'm missing something? No. I believe we get what we're meant to get. 
Just like I believe we're exactly who/what/when/where we're meant to be. I'm not saying there isn't free will. I'm not saying I don't get to choose and strive for and dream about. But the trick, IMO, is to appreciate, and celebrate, what I already have. While I have it.

The world breeds need ("I need it") and entitlement ("I deserve it"). That's dangerous. When you're watching TV, the 4 or 5 commercials within each break are designed to shift your focus from what you have to what you're missing. Enter discontent. "My life isn't/won't be/can't be complete unless I get that thing." Then we get upset/angry/depressed when we don't get that thing. Or when we get that thing but it wasn't the thing we thought we were getting.

Someone once told me certain pieces of jewelry, especially with gemstones or crystals, leave you of their own accord. They're meant to be yours for a specific period of time, providing healing or protection or what-have-you. Then they'll fall off your finger. Unclasp from your neck. And go. It's okay to feel sad they're gone, but they're not really "missing." Their time with you was over and their work with you was done.

I believe people, and relationships, function in a similar way. One day I'll leave this page. For example. I won't be "missing." I'll just be somewhere else. Our time together will be over and our work (here) will be done. The trick is to appreciate, and celebrate, what we have while we have it.

Out of all of the movies and tv shows is there one that looking back you "regretted" doing? One that you wouldn't do if you knew how it turned out, received by the viewing public or critics.

Good question. The answer is "No."

We live in what I think of as a "review culture." We are all of us reviewing all the time. Books, beaches, movies, food, pages, profiles, other people (especially other people). You name it, we review it. We "like" it, we don't. We "get" it, we don't. Thumbs up, thumbs down.

I was being reviewed and graded long (long) before I got to Hollywood. By parents. Teachers. Peers, employers, admissions officers. Like many, the reviews I got were mixed. The negative ones consistent. "Not enough." "Too much." "Less than." "Different." Etc.

Like many, I internalized the above, became my own worst enemy. Self-flagellated. Wore the hair shirt. There is not, at this point, anything that can be said to me I haven't already said to myself. And then some. Compared to the critic in my head, reviewing me non-stop, everyone else is a teddy bear. 

Toothless. Extra plush.

But I will share with you a thought I had recently:

I do not exist to be reviewed.

Could it be true? Could it (possibly) be that simple? (And complex?)

I do not exist to be reviewed.

A new idea, I try it out in my head. A new taste, I roll it around in my mouth.

I do not exist to be reviewed.

As I age (I'm not afraid of getting older, BTW, nor do I need to hear I still look young, FYI), I am less and less interested in being reviewed. Negatively AND positively. That goes for "the viewing audience," the critics, Hollywood, my family, my friends, commenters on soc media, and the wide range of deities and value systems worshipped by the aforementioned.

It goes for me too. More importantly. My internal critic, "the viewing public" that is private, me viewing - and reviewing - me, has grown quieter as I age. Gentler. He's more forgiving, I guess. More compassionate. To be honest he seems less interested. In me and my sh-t. In my thrashing around. "Am I doing this right?" I say to him. "Hey. You. Thumbs up or thumbs down?" Now he may just shrug, lean back in his seat, give me a little smile. Say nothing.

I swear, sometimes I catch him dozing.



The above is not "the truth." It's my truth. My current truth. From which I give myself room and permission to evolve away at any time.



Eternal gratitude to you dear Went,
 for sharing your brilliant thoughts, your welcomed wisdom,
and your much needed advice not to mention
 sparing your precious time to answer
all these questions.
  
I Love you so much.
♥♥♥







Friday, September 14, 2018

Mailbag (9)

Wentworth Miller at Comic Con 2015








WENTWORTH MILLER·FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 14, 2018

If there's a question you'd like to ask, you can do that here. I'll pick a few and, when I'm able, post a public response.

One question per commenter, please.

Questions answered in previous Mailbags will likely not be considered.

Questions about upcoming projects (PB6 etc.) will likely not be considered.

Thanks and all the best. - W.M.







Thank you dear Went, for this wonderful opportunity once again.


I look forward to reading your replies with much interest.

Love always
♥♥♥







©2011-2025 All rights reserved. Debra Heylen /Wentworth Miller With Love.blogspot.com / Terms & Conditions of Use / Privacy Policy

Friday, August 31, 2018

Theft/Piracy!



It has come to my attention that my entire Blogger for Wentworth Miller has been compromised by a thief who felt it their right to steal my  blogger for Wentworth and make it their own. 





This is a serious crime.  It’s known as copyright infringement and it has serious consequences.  

Copyright infringement is the use of works protected by copyright law without permission, infringing certain exclusive rights granted to the copyright holder, such as the right to reproduce, distribute, display or perform the protected work, or to make derivative works. The copyright holder is typically the work's creator, or a publisher or other business to whom copyright has been assigned.

In copyright law, infringement does not refer to theft of physical objects that take away the owner's possession, but an instance where a person exercises one of the exclusive rights of the copyright holder without authorization.

Punishment of copyright infringement varies case-by-case across countries. Convictions may include jail time and/or severe fines for each instance of copyright infringement. In the United States, wilful copyright infringement carries a maximum penalty of $150,000 per instance.

I am requesting this person below to remove my blogger from their link immediately or they must face the consequences. 

Thank you!!


HILL WILF








©2011-2025 All rights reserved. Debra Heylen /Wentworth Miller With Love.blogspot.com / Terms & Conditions of Use / Privacy Policy




Sunday, August 12, 2018

Mailbag (8.2)




WENTWORTH MILLER·SUNDAY, AUGUST 12, 2018

Another one pulled from recent comments. - W.M.

* * * * * *

C: Mr Miller, is it possible to think that some followers react rude, disrespectful, aggressive, inflammatory, etc. to get a reaction of you? (I've seen and heard fans who are very proud and excited of the fact that you react (not very positive) on their not so positive comments. The same applies to being blocked by you). It seems to be the ultimate proof that they have been seen by their idol, role model, celebrity, crush.

R: People who "react rude, disrespectful, aggressive, inflammatory, etc." are not "followers" or "fans." IMO. They're something else entirely.

2nd thought: There's another category of people I wouldn't describe as "followers" or "fans" either. Although they may identify that way. (At least initially.)

It is - has been - moving, to me, to witness strangers visiting this page, succeed in finding (a few of the) things they came looking for.

It is - has been - moving, as well, to witness them fail.

I've been facilitating this space for a few beats, noticed a few patterns. One is the "fan" who arrives, guns blazing, excited to find me (or "me"). He/she/they seem to think that clicking "like" means we are now intimates.

Then that doesn't happen.

Phase 2 looks like Helpful Suggestions, repeated frequently, on how I should run the page, what I ought to be posting (selfies), how I might better interact with/please people (them). The honeymoon is over. We have entered the "I-love-you-now-change" stage.

Then that doesn't happen.

Phase 3 looks like Criticism. Anger. Accusation. Nothing pleases. Nothing will. I am Not The Person They Thought I Was. I am A Villain. They are The Victim. And so forth.

At this point, those with a degree of [insert judgments and projections about strangers here] will leave. Others, who want to be In Relationship With Me, regardless of whether that looks positive or negative, remain. And remain. (And remain.) Until I remove them.

You could argue these "fans," similar to the ones who "react rude, disrespectful, aggressive, inflammatory, etc." didn't fail to find what they came looking for. They succeeded. Achieved, as you suggested, their goal. To be "seen." Being banned is/was the confirmation.

Congratulations? I guess? Does this feel good? Nourishing? Affirming? Whatever's going on, I've seen this play out any number of times, any number of ways. And will again. It is a (now) predictable dynamic. A byproduct of "celebrity culture." And, perhaps, understandable.

I recall reading a profile of a famous actor, in which the journalist observed them interacting with their fans. What they observed was... transactional. The actor received attention. So did the fans. The journalist hypothesized that when the fans saw the actor, it was less "I see So-and-so" than "So-and-so sees me." Their heightened awareness of the actor, having watched them onscreen, for years, had created in the fans a sense of dis-ease. On a deep, unconscious level, they were made uncomfortable by the idea that while they knew the actor existed, the actor did not know they existed. So when they finally saw the actor - and were, in turn, seen - they experienced relief. An ease to their dis-ease.

Do I believe this is how it works? I don't know. I think you'd have to take it on a case-by-case, fan-by-fan basis.

What I can tell you is when I'm interviewed by journalists in foreign countries, I am (almost) always asked, "Have you always wanted to visit us here in ___ ?" What I can tell you is that when I do Mailbags, I am (almost) always asked, "Do you plan to visit us here in ___ ?"

At the root of these questions is, perhaps, a common question - "Do we exist, on your radar, as you exist on ours?"

No acting class prepared me for this. For easing a stranger's (existential?) discomfort.

Nor did it prepare me for the other things I've been asked to hold space for on this page. The bullies and the predators. The bigots and the homophobes. The fixers. The armchair shrinks. The Born-Agains preaching hellfire and the Woo-Woo types insisting I Rise Above The Noise to find INNER PEACE (dude, if you're on my FB page writing about "inner peace" in all caps, you and inner peace remain unacquainted). People advising me to STFU and entertain them, or else threatening to hurt themselves if I don't Help Them Right Now. (A good deal of this is seen/read only by myself, thanks to FB's filters and my own, stricter filters.) All while I speak into depression, suicide, mental health issues...

Please - don't confuse this with a plea for understanding. No one's going to "get it." Or needs to. 

Except me. It's not a plea for sympathy either. Sympathy doesn't keep me warm at night. But self-expression makes an excellent pillow. (Except when it doesn't. More on that below.)

It's not within my power, it's also not my desire, to go everywhere, be everything, to everyone. Many of us have tried some version of that. Doesn't work out so hot. This is a recipe for upset. Breakdown. I recognize it runs counter to the way I'm built, the kinds of life(style) choices my MHIs require/demand. Breaking contracts, not giving (some) people what they came looking for, is part of that equation. The real question is... Am I okay with that?

The answer is "Yes." (More or less.)

Not because it's thrilling to let people down or I don't give a f-ck. But because I'm learning to show more respect for my limitations/boundaries. What I've shared and offered up, here and other places - myself, my exploration/investigation, my thoughts/feelings - has brought me incredible gifts... but not without cost. I need to respect, remain conscious of, constantly, the trade-off. The disconnect between How I/Other People Would Have Me Be vs. How I Am.

"You shouldn't have to explain yourself."

People leave that comment here. Protectively, I think. Thanks. I agree. And - it's a "both/and" (my favorite) - that's essentially what this page is. Me explaining myself. It's a self-centered exercise that happens to benefit other people (or so I'm told). Explaining myself (first to me, then sharing) is how I understand myself. I don't always know what my Truth is until I see it in writing, articulate the reason(s) Why. How Come. In this space my Truth gets told (a lot of it). That doesn't always happen elsewhere. Not automatically. Especially when I'm busy being (performing) Wentworth Miller. Living up to Expectations. My own and other people's.*

"God I'm tired."

I wrote that on a piece of paper at the 2016 Attitude Magazine Awards in London, three minutes before walking on stage to accept The Man Of The Year Award. The paper was my acceptance speech. Which, two minutes earlier, I'd learned was completely useless.

Rewind two minutes.

I'm sitting at my table, waiting for my award to be announced so I can leave. Someone leans over, says, "Congrats on winning The Man Of The Year Award." I say, "Thanks. But I won The Leading Man Award." They say, "No. It's The Man Of The Year Award." I lean over to my agent, sitting next to me. I say, "I thought it was The Leading Man Award." My agent says, "That's what they told us." I say, "I wrote a speech, about what it means, to me, to be a 'leading man.' Because I thought I was winning The Leading Man Award." My agent says, "That's what they told us." I hold up my carefully prepared speech, that I'd practiced in my hotel room. I say, "I can't use this." Someone leans over, says, "Mr. Miller. You're on in five."

CUT TO: Me in the hallway outside the gala, in search of a pen. I have paper (my old speech) but I don't have a pen. My agent comes back with the thickest magic marker ever invented. I sigh, take it, write, "God I'm tired" on my old, now unusable speech. Because it's the truth. The only truth I can wrap my head around in this moment. My agent returns with a proper pen. "Here." I take it, scribble a few lines, choose an ending. Someone leans over, says, "Mr. Miller. They're announcing your award." 

I give the pen back to my agent. Walk on stage.

Later, watching it online, I thought, "You might never know." That my speech was written minutes before I gave it but also that I hadn't slept in 48 hours. My previous engagement on that UK trip was a talk at the Oxford Student Union, which went well (IMO). And when I retired to my hotel room that night, I lay in bed with my eyes open, sweating and shivering, bracing against contractions that seized me until the alarm went off. Rise and shine.

The same thing happened after I gave my speech at the Active Minds National Conference in 2016. Ditto my speech at the Human Rights Campaign Dinner in 2013. Those speeches, too, went well (IMO). They meant something to me. And to someone, somewhere (I trust). But a bill came due. Behind the scenes. None of that was free of charge. It never is. My mind enjoys Speaking My Truth. My fingers Writing My Truth. The rest of me (my body, specifically) has Other Ideas. A small wrench in the All Better Now narrative. A tiny fly in the Make It Look Easy ointment. On stage: Wellness/Okayness. Off stage: Struggle. "And the award goes to..."

What does this mean? In the short-term, it means fewer talks. Fewer speeches. (Not forever. But for now.) Long-term it means... TBD. This is a "somatic" issue. (Apparently. Potentially.) Which I'm investigating. Working on. (This and other issues.) Will continue to. With support. Support I'm fortunate enough to have available to me.

It also means constructing my life - and its various facets, to the best of my abilities - so I can continue vibrating at a healthy frequency. Ensuring the pots on my stove - all of them - are in service of progression and evolution. Relentless progression and evolution.

What doesn't work, gets dismantled. "Thank you. Goodbye."

What nourishes, remains. "Welcome. Sit down." - W.M.


December 2016. FB. "Duck's Back (Back-up)" **

"This page, among other things, has gone a long way toward breaking the (or my) traditional 'actor/fan' contract. Upsetting conscious and unconscious expectations and assumptions... That's not an accident. And there's more to come...

When I die, and I'm seated at the foot of my maker (whoever he/she/they may be), you know what we're not going to be talking about? Ratings. Awards. Magazine covers. My imdb page...

We're going to be talking about my growth as a man. As an artist. As a soul...
That's my commitment. And my priority..."



eorge Veltchev


The above is not "the truth." It's my truth. My current truth. From which I give myself room and permission to evolve away at any time.






Dear Went, you're a precious Gift.
Thank you so much for sharing
your truth and 
for shining your beautiful light!





©2011-2025 All rights reserved. Debra Heylen /Wentworth Miller With Love.blogspot.com / Terms & Conditions of Use / Privacy Policy

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Mailbag (8.1)




I'd already planned another Mailbag. Then I thought - why not draw from responses to my "Recalibration" post? * There were lots of chewy comments. Giving rise to chewy thoughts.

As always, I remain grateful for this discussion. And for those who choose to participate (and it is a choice). Onward. - W.M.

* * * * * *

Comment (C): It's your Facebook, you shouldn't have to say this. It should have been an automatic understanding of common decency. People can be problematic so I guess it's to be expected, but it still it saddens me that you need to put up with it.

Reply (R): Actually, I'm glad I have the chance to engage with this kind of work. It's good for me. To practice setting healthy boundaries. Re-setting when required. It's not something I've done a ton of, historically.

When I first started this page I thought, "My work looks like holding an endlessly generous, endlessly patient, endlessly tolerant space..." And did. To the best of my abilities. Until that became (surprise!) completely unsustainable. What am I? A saint? No. (Not that the idea of sainthood isn't attractive. It's a look. But I'm too messy. Too "of the flesh." Happy to be so.)

Meanwhile, (some) people got the idea that Anything Goes. On this page. And I was sweet to allow it. I wasn't sweet. I was passive. (More on this in a bit.)

Additionally, in retrospect, unconsciously, part of me was trying to be slick. "I know... I'll say my work looks like holding an endlessly generous/patient/tolerant space so I don't HAVE to draw boundaries... I'll pretend being completely without boundaries is a virtue... Yeah... That's the ticket." That was me aspiring to something saintly/unrealistic (but flattering to the ego), while trying to get out of doing my (real) work (setting boundaries). Sneaky of me.

Boundaries, for me, are where it's at. Where it needs to remain.

C: Wow, fans...rest assured he would never visit your profile, never. It’s inappropriate..? Why? 
Because you’re better than us? More important? We’re peasants? That was about the most pompous admission I’ve seen in a while. Gross.

R: This page is, clearly, public. Anyone can visit. And if/when they do, that doesn't mean I'm suddenly entitled to be up in their Photo Albums. Regardless of whether I would be welcome there, that's inappropriate. IMO.

The majority of folks on this page understand, naturally and organically, that while they may resonate with me as a person, or with something I've written, or a role I've played, it doesn't mean we have a Special Relationship. That we are Wonder Twins Activate. A minority do not understand this. Me visiting their page (or allowing them to imagine I might be visiting their page) is a Bad Idea. It gives them ideas. That do not need to be encouraged.

Such is the state of things.

P.S. You didn't get banned because you misunderstood and/or disagreed with what I wrote. You got banned because your comment was aggressive and inflammatory.

C: so much of what you say resonates with me, as I'm sure it does with many others. And I think sometimes there is something comforting about knowing that there are other people out there who think similarly to us about things, especially when we don't find that in our day to day lives.

R: I agree. There is something comforting about seeing us (or a piece of us) reflected back. To nod in recognition. To hear a call (or two) from across the canyon.
 
C: Just a bit of advice sweetie,be like Dominic Purcell his reaction is f-ck off,he couldn’t give a f-ck what people think,that’s why I admire him so much

R: Oh? Dom couldn't give a f-ck what people think? Where did you read that? On his IG? Where he shares things? In public? Where people can "like" them? Is that where you read that? "Sweetie?"
I have yet to meet a successful, meaningful performer/storyteller, with a stage, an audience of some kind, that couldn't give a f-ck what people think.

C: when you said sweet wouldn’t crack the top 20 - I remember you saying in a previous post that you thought you were sweet as well as a crocodile and you liked koalas and all that. And I mean when people say it like a hug. You know how you published that prayer? I’m sorry but are you being crusty? I don’t want to overstep my bounds but it was your prayer.

R: I am asked, repeatedly, how I evolved away from depression. I have a million answers. At or near the top of the list: I gave myself permission to Break Sh-t. Specifically my Ideas about who I was. Or should be. I gave myself permission to grow/change/evolve. Step into the new. Move left instead of (always) right. Be something today I wasn't yesterday. Say goodbye - and continue to say goodbye - to things (bad habits, negative self-talk, etc.) that stand in my way.

People too. I gave myself permission to break relationships. Interrupt old routines. Dissolve unspoken contracts. And was met with resistance. Amazing how insistent friends/family/co-workers/strangers can be that we remain Exactly Who We Are. Or rather who They Think We Are. Need Us To Be. No matter how unhealthy or unworkable.

One of the ways they do this is by keeping the (selective) past present. "Remember when you did ___ ? And when you said ___ ?" These people do not want us thinking new. Acting new. Being new. They want us old. How we were. Because it's comfy/cozy. For them.

But since we're spinning old records, I said this too:

"I was raised to believe not meeting other people’s expectations meant failure. If that’s true, why does it taste so much like freedom?" **

Sweet: "marked by gentle good humor or kindliness. [A] sweet disposition." ***

Here's what's true (for me): I'm not sure I was ever sweet. TBH. I'm not sure I knew what I was talking about when I referred to myself as such. My "humor" looked (and looks) edgier. Darker. My "kindliness" looked (can still look) like "niceness." Not the same thing. ****

Outside of familial/romantic relationships, what is our intention when we call people "sweet" or "sweetie?" When we call gay men "sweet" or "sweetie?"

Depends who's calling, right? Who's answering.

What does it mean when a gay man comes/learns to think of himself as "sweet?" "I'm sweet," I used to think. "Sweet = me." What I think, now, was I was accommodating. Compliant. Set on pleasing. In order to be liked. Fit in. Avoid punishment. Keep privileges. And we called it "sweet." Me and others. Because it sounded better. More like a positive. "Aren't you sweet?" they'd say, smiling, plopping their sh-t-caked boots on my coffee table while I watched, said nothing. "Mm-hm. A real sweetheart."
I do not, these days, (automatically) think of that word as a compliment. Or of myself. These days, I am not inclined to allow boots on my table. And when I look around me, many of the people in my life who called me sweet, were invested in me as sweet... aren't around me.

"Sweet" and "sweetie" are, for me, now, suspect. Worthy of examination. Side-eye. The world encourages gay men (and others) to be sweet, IMO, to embody sweetness because it works to the world's advantage. It helps keep us in our place. Exactly As We Were.

Bottom line: I reserve the right to evolve. To change my mind. Break Sh-t. Contradict myself. Confuse. Disappoint. Let folks down. Make a mess that makes sense to me and me alone. To be/think/say/desire differently tomorrow than today. My health, my survival, depends on it.

As far as being "crusty"... Me setting boundaries and doing my work = me setting boundaries and doing my work. If people choose to assign values (negative or positive) that's about them and their work.

C: Do you have a solid way of confirming that super cute person is really that super cute person?

R: Alas... I don't. Once or twice it occurred to me... am I being catfished? (Another reason to leave stones unturned.) Besides, I think there's value in letting certain things remain out of reach, certain people unmet and undiscovered (in the flesh or otherwise). Don't you find it's pleasant? In a bittersweet way? To long for something? Or someone? To sigh? And wonder?

I think, especially as an adult, finding things to sigh about, to wonder about, then protecting them (from the truth, if necessary), is so important.

I remember hearing or reading once, "When you find a good thing... leave it alone." Because the temptation is to pick at it. Pull it apart and get to the bottom of it. Find out what makes it a good thing. And what we find out is there's nothing there. At the bottom. It was just a good thing. And now we've picked it apart.

C: how can people relate to having a role model to someone they don’t even know!

R: [The commenter was referencing a celebrity recently in the news, going through a difficult time (allegedly).]

I think you're right. I think it's risky to bestow "role model" status on people we don't know. (And sometimes those we do.) Inevitably (and occasionally to our grim satisfaction) they're revealed to be something more/less/other than we thought.

"Celebrity culture" is built on the shakiest of foundations. IMO. And looking for role models ("This person models integrity/decency/whatever for the rest of us") among people in the performing arts seems counterintuitive to me. They explore the darkest, most raw and taboo corners of the human experience. They're outlaws. Grifters. Shape-shifters. (I mean this as a compliment.) They pretend to f-ck and kill people on camera, sing about... whatever barely legal sh-t the kids are singing about. Then stand on red carpets at Worthy Events, say The Right Things, signal virtue and it's received as The Truth. The Only Truth. "They must be virtuous." They could be. But they're other things too. Like you and me. Still, we're shocked (shocked!) when those things come to light.

By virtue of the fact I happen to be an actor, and gay, with an audience, I'm considered a de facto role model by and to some. And felt the Weight Of Expectations. Within ("Now I need to say this, go there, do that") and Without ("You speak for us now"). No thank you. I value my voice. My room to maneuver. My independence (while participating in community). If I model something for someone, somewhere, that's a choice they made.

C: I always connect with what you’re saying and personally find it inspiring. That said boundaries are important and we are not friends. We won’t ever be friends because I don’t matter in your world. I’m just here to observe it and grow as a person.

R: No. We won't ever be friends (nothing personal). But I wouldn't say, "You don't matter in my world." This page is my world. Part of it anyway. What happens here matters to me. For this brief moment we are sharing this space, breathing the same (virtual) air, doing our work side-by-side. It's intimate. It's everything. And nothing. Simultaneously.

C: I have been rereading this and have come to the conclusion that you have insulted your fans. From the looks of it, many don't care to notice or acknowledge that fact but this is what fans do so I'm not disappointed in them (I believe someone here just apologised to you for calling you 'my love'). But I am known to speak my mind and I am disappointed.

R: someone here just apologised to you for calling you 'my love'

I am not their love. They are not mine. This strikes me as a necessary adjustment.
The apology is unnecessary. This isn't about racking up "sorrys." Or people double-checking every comment they've ever made. This is about a grown man who's not okay with strangers (some quite young, it seems) addressing me in ways that don't feel appropriate. For years.
It's quite common to hear "the fans" referred to as if they're a single entity, united in mind, manners, intentions. They aren't. IMO, a large percentage of people on this page would not, in fact, call themselves "fans." They came for other reasons. They remain for other reasons.  

I think the real challenge for (some of) "the fans," is the discovery of boundaries where none were before. Or seemed to be. And that the more I share myself in this space, the harder it is to confuse me with someone ("my love") who doesn't exist.

C: Someday soon you will meet someone fall in love and everything will change. When this happens you can forget this site.

R: Reading this (well-meaning) comment, the image I have is of me making my way down a rock face, without a helmet or harness, backwards, in heels, while someone yells up from the bottom, "Hey! One day you're gonna win the lottery!"

Thanks? I guess?

Who said I'm hoping "everything will change?" That I don't believe everything is Perfectly Imperfect the way it is? (Without adding other people, and their inevitable baggage, to the mix?) Who said I want to fall in love (again)? That it's on my to-do list? That I think love is essential to my/our general happiness/contentment? To a Life Worth Living? Who, for that matter, said I'm not in love already? That I'm not neck-deep in love? Of various kinds?

Whatever's in store, I won't forget this site anytime soon. I've found growth here. Much gold. This page, what I've written/shared, read/experienced, learned from, is on par with anything I've achieved in any arena. And that wasn't achieved alone.

That doesn't need to ring true for the next person to ring true for me.

C: So for those of your followers/fans who either are to shy or aren't fluent enough, just f-cking thank you.

R: You're welcome. F-cking thank you too.







The above is not "the truth." It's my truth. My current truth. From which I give myself room and permission to evolve away at any time.



With heartfelt thanks
dear Wentworth for your very
interesting mailbag.
Sending you much love.
♥♥♥


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