"Pretty Little Liars" and "Roswell, New Mexico" Star Tyler Blackburn Talks About Being Queer for the First Time

Lauren Rearick
"When you literally have to mute who you are in order to feel safe. That’s soul-crushing.”

Tyler Blackburn, former star of Pretty Little Liars and current Roswell cast member, has shared that he's queer in a new interview.

As the cover star of The Advocate's April issue, Tyler talked about his sexuality and announced that he intends to be “as happy as possible, as free as possible." That new motto includes coming out, with Tyler saying, "I'm queer. I've identified as bisexual since a teenager. I just want to feel powerful in my own skin, and my own mind, and in my own heart.”

Tyler shared that he's always had an “underlying curiosity" about dating men, but felt pressured to never publicly address his sexuality. "I heard so many things from within the queer community about bisexuality being a cop-out or bullsh*t or the easy way out or something, and that always stuck with me because I felt the pressure from all sides to have [my sexuality] figured out," he said. "And I think for the longest time, I suppressed more of my attraction to men. It wasn’t until my late 20s, towards the end of Pretty Little Liars, that I really allowed myself to go there and not just wonder about it or lust over it, but experience that vulnerability and experience the emotional aspect of what it is to be bisexual.”

As a young student in the 10th grade, Tyler said that he was "bullied," sharing, that he had "stopped doing so many of the things that I loved doing because it felt safer. That right there is the outcome of oppression. When you literally have to mute who you are in order to feel safe. That’s soul-crushing.”

Going forward, Tyler wants to continue to live "as free" as possible, saying, "Now we’re at a place where fluidity is spoken about in such a beautiful way that it doesn’t make me feel as pressured to have it figured out. My goal above everything is to feel as happy as possible."

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