Openly gay Hollyoaks star, PJ Brennan has revealed his upset over homophobic taunts from the public.
Brennan, who plays on of the shows best loved characters, Doug Carter, had the attention on his own sexuality heightened last May when his character came out in Hollyoaks.
Doug Carter had previously been in a relationship with student, Jenny, before developing feelings for his business partner, Ste Hay (Kieron Richardson).
Doug and Ste eventually got married, but their happiness was short lived when it became apparent that Ste still had feelings for his ex, Brendan Brady (Emmett J Scanlan), causing Doug to leave for a new life in America.
Now Doug is back, however, and seemingly comfortable and accepting of Ste’s new relationship, and has even shown signs of being ready to move on himself after the introduction of John-Paul McQueen (James Sutton) this week, but as the actor who plays him, PJ Brennan, has explained to the Daily Star newspaper, things aren’t quite so easy for him in real life.
Discussing the public’s reaction to his sexuality, Brennan admitted that some of the hateful slurs that he receives makes him “feel awful”.
“I got called ‘faggot Doug’ on the street a few weeks ago,” he revealed. “A lot of gay men have tweeted me to say I have a gay haircut now, which is homophobic.
“Gay men tweet me and say I’m skinny or cry too much, so within the gay community there is self-hatred.
“People assume that I am 100% comfortable about being gay but it’s the exact opposite.
“The perception is that I should have had all this worked out by the time I got on a show that has put me in the spotlight for being gay. I’m still working it out; I’m very late in my own development.”PJ and Kieron Richardson stripping off in support of the Terrence Higgins Trust!
“To have people message me every day and tell me things, I feel bad because half of me wants to empathise with them and the other half wants to go, ‘You don’t know what I have to deal with every day’.
“There are so many hurdles I need to get over. It’s tricky but it means I need to focus on myself and making me happy.”
Watch an interview with PJ in the clip below:
Hollyoaks can be seen week nights at 6.30pm on Channel 4/ Channel 4 HD.