’Y&R’s Christian Leblanc Still Does Not Hold Husband’s Hand After 29 Years in Public – He Hid Sexuality for Decades
Although "Young and the Restless" star Christian LeBlanc has been married to his husband for almost three decades, he avoids holding his hand publicly.
Born on August 25, 1958, Christian LeBlanc is best known as Michael Baldwin in "The Young and the Restless." While he is one of today's most recognizable soap opera actors, his childhood was not a walk in the park.
LeBlanc is the second of eight kids who grew up with their Creole mother, Alice, and Cajun father, Major Andre Victor. The LeBlanc patriarch was one of the first Green Berets, so he spent much time away from home.
CHRISTIAN LEBLANC'S EARLY LIFE
Even though Major Andre missed World War II, he was drafted for the conflicts in Korea and completed a couple of tours in Vietnam. Meanwhile, Alice, a housewife, cared for their children.
Major Andre always recognized Alice's hard work. During her funeral, he told everyone that the real hero in his household was Alice because she raised eight kids with just enough money.
As a young kid, LeBlanc saw his mother "overwhelmed" by her responsibilities and the difficulties of managing the finances for her family. It was "a strain," the actor confessed, but Alice always wanted a large family.
Fortunately, Alice and Major Andre could provide education for their children. LeBlanc attended Jesuit High School and eventually majored in Ancient History and Pre-Med at Tulane University in Louisiana.
Sadly, Alice died of cancer in 2003, and LeBlanc went to therapy. He realized he had too many things going on in his life, so after "knowingly or not" sending so many people to treatment, he noticed he needed to follow his advice and visit a professional.
LeBlanc is particularly fond of his time in detox at mental health facilities.
It was not the first time a close member of LeBlanc's family died, though. One of his six brothers, Victor, passed away of AIDS at 25. During an interview with Maurice Benard's "State of Mind," the actor said:
"I remember he came out here and… I think he just wanted to get away, get distracted. He asked to move in with me here, and I didn't have a job at the time."
LeBlanc pointed out that because of a "moral failing," his brother was not treated for AIDS but a "special" type of cancer that only happened to him.
LEARNING FROM HOSPITALS AND MENTAL HEALTH FACILITIES
Before the acting bug bit LeBlanc in the 1980s, he wanted to work in the medical field. He even volunteered at hospitals and mental health facilities during his time in grammar school, where he learned most of what he knew about drama.
The actor admitted those two experiences taught him the most beautiful and tragic things. LeBlanc is particularly fond of his time in detox at mental health facilities.
He revealed he participated in a few interventions with addicts' family circles, and those situations were filled with drama and good acting.
In some cases, LeBlanc witnessed "brutal honesty." However, not everyone was willing to cooperate. Some refused to be honest, and he admitted drug users could be outstanding actors and manipulators.
Apart from acting skills, LeBlanc also learned that regular education had flaws about mental health. Kids are not exposed to what LeBlanc described as "the main [driving] forces."
Instead, they are all in a bubble with other kids driven by the same things. When certain people notice they have different interests, they feel like they are "bizarre."
Before telling Benard he was gay, LeBlanc said homosexuals were considered "sick people." People didn't take them seriously before the Stonewall riots in 1969 – a watershed event in the fight for LGBT rights in the United States.
Even today, LeBlanc has reservations about his love life and lives with the legacy of homophobia. Although he has been married for 29 years, he avoids holding his husband's hand in public or showing PDA.
[LeBlanc] dealt with anxiety during lockdown because he spent some time alone in New Orleans.
LeBlanc's interview went viral because it was his first time publicly acknowledging he was gay. Some of his fans took to social media to point out that they never imagined he was gay.
Others were glad that he could finally be true to himself in public after these years. A netizen admitted it was sad that some people were judged by who they love. Another Facebook user joked that LeBlanc should hold his husband's hand and let the world look.
MAKING IT AS A SELF-TAUGHT ILLUSTRATOR
LeBlanc made his acting debut in Barq's Root Beer commercial before making it big in the "Young and the Restless." If being a talented actor wasn't enough, LeBlanc is also an illustrator who has already made money with his art.
Everything started years ago, when he would only create paintings for his young nephews. Eventually, producers of the play "Ladies in Retirement," in which he was starring with Julie Harris, asked him to create animal paintings of the production's human characters. After that, painting became part of his art.
LeBlanc also said he used to paint when he was unemployed and considered it an "honor" that people want to pay for his illustrations.
During the coronavirus pandemic, he made some paintings and called the collection "Walking in a Time of Plague" because he got inspiration during the long walks he took for his mental health.
LeBlanc admitted he dealt with anxiety during lockdown because he spent some time alone in New Orleans and painting helped him cope.
He was okay during the daytime because he kept himself busy painting, doing physical activities, and taking long walks. "When I'm trying to sleep, that's when it hits," the actor confessed.
LeBlanc was not the only "Young and the Restless" star who made headlines in 2021, though. In the soap opera, Michael Tylo, known as Blade Bladeson and Rick Bladeson, passed away on September 28.
Tylo was 73 and died following an undisclosed sickness. He reunited in Heaven with his son, Michael Jr., who passed away at 19 after suffering a seizure and drowning in a swimming pool in 2007. Rest in peace.
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