During an interview with Andy Cohen on his Sirius XM radio show Andy Cohen Live, openly gay actor Colton Haynes admitted that he lost his virginity at age 13 and had sex with four girls (continuing to sleep with women even after he had accepted he was gay). He also said that when he started his acting career in Hollywood, his management team told him to stay closeted (though we already knew that).
During the interview, Colton said, “I lost my virginity at 13 … to a girl and a guy…. The girl was two years older than me and the guy was … around 16…. I was in eighth grade, I think. It was definitely … a real first time.”
He added that he even though he realized he was gay at age 14, he continued sleeping with boys and girls throughout high school, mostly because he would go back into the closet when his parents moved him to a new high school and then come out near the year’s end only to go back into the closet when he changed high schools again.
During that time he slept with three other girls.
Here’s a clip of his interview with Cohen:
Haynes’ admissions remind us of the dangers of bisexual erasure. Although Haynes himself does not currently identify as bisexual, his behavior certainly was and it’s important not to assume that every teen who sleeps with someone is either definitively one way or another.
Haynes continued to say that his management team suggested that he remain closeted when he began his professional Hollywood acting career:
Since Haynes has so many male and female Instagram followers and friends, Cohen asked whether Colton stayed publicly closeted until 2016 as a way of maintaining his heartthrob appeal to female fans.
“I was literally told from the day that I moved to Los Angeles that I could not be gay because I wouldn’t work. Then I was with my management team and a team of people that just literally told me I couldn’t be this way. They tried to set me up with girls. I was rumored to date Lauren Conrad for six months because they were kind of angling a story.”
Of his female dates, Haynes said, “They knew the whole time [that I was gay]. It was like a Tab Hunter situation.” Tab Hunter was ’50s and ’60s-era film star who secretly gay and yet forced by his studio to publicly date women for good Hollywood press.
“ It was just… it was horrible,” Haynes said. “Then I just had a breakdown.”
Haynes said his breakdown came from ongoing issues with anxiety and the fact that he didn’t feel like he could be himself: He used to lower his voice to sound straighter and wouldn’t wear what he wanted to for fear of being read as gay.
In 2006, Haynes appeared in an XY magazine photo spread kissing another young man. His agents tried to scrub the photos from the internet when Haynes started appearing in the MTV drama Teen Wolf.