“Schitt’s Creek” actor François Arnaud came out as bisexual in an Instagram story in advance of Bi Visibility Day, which is celebrated Wednesday.
On Sunday, the French Canadian entertainer, 35, wrote that he wasn’t “confused or trying to look edgy” and was sharing his story to help combat “assumptions of straightness” and bisexual erasure.
“Last week, I was chatting with work friends, and as I brought up a trip I’d taken with an ex-girlfriend, I asked myself — for the ten-thousandth time — how to tell such a story without making it seem like that was the whole story of me,” he began. “I’m sure many bisexual guys feel the same and end up doing as I did: letting other people’s assumptions of straightness stand uncorrected.”
In his lengthy post, Arnaud went on to ponder why he chose to stay silent.
“Perhaps out of fear of oversharing. Under the guise of privacy, maybe. Probably because ‘masculinity’ is a most fragile currency, ready to nose-dive at the first sign of vulnerability or difference. And because it’s really f------ scary to give up your privilege. Without a doubt because stigmas of indecisiveness, infidelity, deception and trendiness are still clinging to bisexuality.”
He added that silence perpetuates bi invisibility “and leading people to doubt that we even exist.”
“No wonder it’s still a chore to acknowledge bisexuality without getting into lengthy explanations. So yes, labels are frustrating and words, imperfect. But I’ve always considered myself bisexual. Not confused or trying to look edgy. Not disloyal. Not ashamed. Not invisible. Happy #bivisibilityday this Wednesday.”
Launched in 1999, Bi Visibility Day aims to raises awareness of those who are attracted to more than one gender and challenges bisexual and biromantic erasure.
Research has shown that bisexual individuals face “double discrimination,” often being invalidated and stigmatized by both straight and gay people.
And while bisexuals account for roughly 40 percent of the LGBTQ community, they are much less likely to be open about their sexual orientation, according to a 2019 study from the Pew Research Center. The report found only 19 percent of bisexuals said they were out to the important people in their lives, compared to 75 percent of gays and lesbians. Some 26 percent said they weren’t out to anyone, compared to just 4 percent of gay men and women.
Arnaud got his first break on the Canadian French-language series “Taxi 0-22,” and, in 2009 he received acclaim for his role in Xavier Dolan’s “I Killed My Mother.”
He then starred in Showtime’s historical drama “The Borgias” alongside Jeremy Irons and Holliday Grainger, with whom he was linked romantically.
More recently Arnaud starred in two NBC dramas, “Blindspot” and the supernatural drama “Midnight, Texas,” where he played a psychic drawn to a town populated by vampires, witches and a married pair of gay angels.
In 2017, Arnaud appeared in the third season of the award-winning series “Schitt’s Creek,” playing Sebastien Raine, David’s ex-boyfriend, who arrives in town to do a photoshoot with Moira.