Lili Reinhart opened up about why she didn’t want to come out while dating Cole Sprouse

The actress first came out publicly in June, and now she's explaining why she waited.

While it seemed like it came out of nowhere at the time, Lili Reinhart’s coming out as bisexual in June was actually a bit more considered than you might have first thought. In a new episode of the LGBTQ&A podcast, Reinhart opened up about her reasons for waiting until she was single to come out, and yes, part of it was due to her relationship with her ex-boyfriend Cole Sprouse.

ICYMI, Reinhart came out publicly via an Instagram story promoting an LGBTQ+ Black Lives Matter protest that she was attending in Los Angeles. “Although I’ve never announced it publicly before, I am a proud bisexual woman,” she wrote on her Instagram story. At the time, there were rumours that the Riverdale co-stars had split, but nothing had been confirmed at the time.

In the new podcast episode, Reinhart shared that she was actually “afraid” to come out, having experienced biphobia and people dismissing her sexuality as a “phase”. “I didn’t want people to tell me that I was lying to get attention or something,” she said. “And so I just kept my mouth shut.”

“I think that’s why I didn’t come out as bisexual until I was not in a relationship anymore,” Reinhart explained. “Because it’s easy for people to question, ‘Oh, but you’re with a man that’s straight.’ It’s like, well, Anna Paquin is married to a man, but she is bisexual.” For the record, nobody should need to be in a certain type of relationship to justify or validate their sexuality, but we can see how it sometimes feels easier to defend other people’s personal lives than your own.

She also explained that another reason she was reluctant to come out was due to people misunderstanding or questioning her relationship with Sprouse. “I didn’t want to put my ex [Sprouse] in a position, it seems like it would have been a little strange to come out when I was in a hetero relationship,” she shared. “It just seemed, I don’t know, maybe a little bit like I was looking for something else while I was in the relationship.”

Sprouse confirmed in their split in a bittersweet Instagram post, sharing that they separated in January before splitting for good in March. “I didn’t really think about coming out until after I was not in a relationship anymore,” Reinhart shared, “It just felt more organic that way.”

As for her post-coming out experience? Well, it sounds like it’s been pretty positive. “I did have a couple of ladies sliding into my DMs which I thought was funny, but also flattering,” she shared on the podcast. “It was interesting to see the difference in my DMs after I came out, which was a nice little surprise… And also just like, I hate to say it, [there were] more quality human beings.”

Honestly, we love that for her!

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