While talking about mental and developmental disorders, diagnoses, and just openness about mental health in general used to be pretty taboo, open conversations are starting to be had in many different ways. Celebrities are also starting to break their silence on these topics and, now, Legends of Tomorrow vet Wentworth Miller has broken his internet silence to reveal his autism diagnosis with a very candid message to his fans.
Wentworth Miller deleted all of his public social media sites a few years ago and recently created new accounts for fans to follow. In his most recent post on his new Instagram, Miller candidly reflected on being diagnosed with autism over the course of the pandemic.
While in the post he says that he has suspected himself to be autistic and had previously self-diagnosed himself, Wentworth Miller also acknowledged that this coming fall will mark his one-year anniversary of being formally diagnosed as an autistic person. He goes on to say that the diagnosis process was a long one and expresses his feelings that the process needs updating and improving.
In an introspective statement and nod to those less fortunate than himself, Wentworth Miller states that he considers himself fortunate to be able to say he has been formally diagnosed. Even though conversations about mental and developmental disorders are becoming less taboo in the modern world, there still seems to be a large amount of privilege associated with getting help or formal acknowledgement of those disorders.
A large part of Wentworth Miller’s candid statement about his recent diagnosis is the recognition that it is still fairly new to him and that he does not know nearly everything there is to know about autism. With this, he spoke about how he plans to approach being a new member of the autism community. Here’s exactly what the Prison Break star says on that front:
I don't know enough about autism. (There's a lot to know.) Right now my work looks like evolving my understanding. Re-examining 5 decades of lived experience thru a new lens. That will take time. Meanwhile, I don't want to run the risk of suddenly being a loud, ill-informed voice in the room. The #autistic community (this I do know) has historically been talked over. Spoken for. I don't wish to do additional harm. Only to raise my hand, say, ‘I am here. Have been (w/o realizing it).’
This is not the first time Wentworth Miller has used his voice to shed light on the traits that make up who he is as a person as well as issues that matter. Almost a decade ago, Miller came out publicly as a gay man and actually released a statement in which he said that he no longer wished to play straight characters. This was due to the fact that he felt their voices and their stories had been told time and time again. Queer representation has since improved drastically, but some franchises are just now beginning to break that barrier.
Representation of the autistic community exists, but it honestly isn’t nearly as present in film and TV as it could be. It's very likely that this will remain the case until more voices in the community are added to writers' rooms and are in the room when producers are discussing potential projects. Wentworth Miller calls his diagnosis a gift and being autistic is “central to who he is”, which is a sentiment everyone can surely appreciate.