Candid life

Graphic novelist says she’s open about her sexuality because of her closeted father

Alison Bechdel in her childhood home in Beech Creek, Pa. Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times

In an interview with NPR’s Terry Gross, the graphic novelist Alison Bechdel, known for Fun Home, explained how she decided to always be honest and open about her own sexuality, as her own father lived his life as a closeted gay man. “In many ways my life, my professional career has been a reaction to my father’s life, his life of secrecy,” Bechdel said on NPR’s Fresh Air. “I threw myself into the gay community, into this life as a lesbian cartoonist, deciding I was going to be a professional lesbian. In a way, that was all my way of healing myself.” Her father died 4 months after she came out as a lesbian in 1980, when she was just 19 years old, in what Bechdel suspects to have been a suicide. Her graphic novel Fun Home, which has now been turned into a Tony Award-winning Broadway musical, deals with this difficult part of her life.

Read the full story at NPR.

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