Wentworth Miller Posts Wrenching Reply To Crappy Body-Shaming Meme
Prison Break star Wentworth Miller took to Facebook to reply to an especially crappy meme from the British bro site The LAD Bible. The meme made fun of Miller’s weight gain after Prison Break ended, contrasting a publicity still of the actor from the show, which required him to be ripped and covered in fake tattoos, with one of him in 2010 in everyday life, looking a bit heavier. However, the real reason behind Miller’s weight gain was that he was suffering from suicidal depression. Miller wrote that he’s struggled with depression his whole life, but that he reached the breaking point in 2010.
In a Facebook post Miller wrote,
“In 2010, at the lowest point in my adult life, I was looking everywhere for relief/comfort/distraction. And I turned to food. It could have been anything. Drugs. Alcohol. Sex. But eating became the one thing I could look forward to. Count on to get me through. There were stretches when the highlight of my week was a favorite meal and a new episode of TOP CHEF. Sometimes that was enough. Had to be.
“And I put on weight. Big f–king deal.”
“…Now, when I see that image of me in my red t-shirt, a rare smile on my face, I am reminded of my struggle. My endurance and my perseverance in the face of all kinds of demons. Some within. Some without. Like a dandelion up through the pavement, I persist.”
Miller came out in 2013, the same year he made his screenwriting debut with the impeccable horror/thriller Stoker. In fact, he came out in an open letter to the St. Petersburg International Film Festival, where he declined an invitation because of the state of LGBT rights in Russia. Miller told Details, “After Prison Break, I came to grips with the fact that my public persona was in misalignment with how I actually felt. I was out to a handful of people in my twenties, and once I hit 30, I was out to family and friends. But professionally, I was feeding a fantasy. I created this air of ‘We don’t address that thing.'”
Women have faced the same scrutiny in the media for ages and ages, but the pressure on male actors to transform their bodies for superhero roles is leading to similarly destructive “before and after” paparazzi bullshit. Big whoop, women deal with this all the time, right? But there’s no reason that anyone should have to deal with such cruelty, and although it sucks that Miller was compelled to share such personal information under duress, it’s to his credit that he took the opportunity to help battle the stigma of depression. Before ending his post, Miller included resources for anyone suffering from depression.
The LAD Bible has since apologized, although it remains a viral tire fire.