Dove Cameron is looking back on her journey to living authentically.
The actor and singer identified herself as part of the LGBTQ community in an Instagram Live interview last year while discussing the lyric video for her song “We Belong,” which featured same-sex couples in tender embraces.
Speaking to Gay Times for its summer issue, Cameron said she grappled over whether to address her sexuality in the weeks leading up to the song’s release, noting she feared she wouldn’t be accepted for who she is.
“I’ve hinted about my sexuality for years while being afraid to spell it out for everybody,” the 25-year-old said. “I was never confused about who I was. … It felt like something that I could never talk about.”
The “We Belong” video, Cameron explained, initially drew accusations of “queerbaiting,” referring to a disingenuous marketing strategy used to attract LGBTQ consumers. (Artists such as Nick Jonas and Harry Styles have faced similar criticisms.)
Cameron has dated only men publicly and was in a high-profile relationship with actor Thomas Doherty from 2016 to 2020. The actor’s decision to live as her true self came after she acknowledged she was “behaving like somebody who was out and I realized I wasn’t.”
“I went on Instagram Live and said, ‘Guys, I really needed to explain something to you. Maybe I haven’t said it, but I’m super queer. This is something I want to represent through my music because it’s who I am.’ Ever since then, I’ve had such an unbelievable relationship with my fans and we have this very safe space that we’ve created.”
In the Instagram chat, Cameron identified herself as bisexual, but she told Gay Times she believes “queer” works better for her.
“I’m not a label person, but I would say that I am queer and that’s probably my most accurate way to represent myself,” she said. “With the process of coming out, it was about who I am as a whole rather than who I choose to date or sleep with. I’m choosing to love myself, to be who I am every day and not edit myself depending on the room that I’m in. I’m making no apologies for who I am.”
In a case of art imitating life, Cameron tweeted last October that she believed the twin sisters she portrayed on the Disney Channel series “Liv and Maddie” from 2013 to 2017 were also queer.
“Maddie was definitely gay,” she wrote at the time, while Liv “was bi.”
The actor will next be seen in “Powerpuff,” a live-action reimagining of the beloved animated series “The Powerpuff Girls.” She’s also signed on to star opposite Jordan Fisher in the HBO Max film “Field Notes on Love,” based on the 2019 young adult novel of the same name.
Calling all HuffPost superfans!
Sign up for membership to become a founding member and help shape HuffPost’s next chapter