Actors Dan Bucatinsky ("Scandal") and Jesse Tyler Ferguson ("Modern Family") are openly gay actors in Hollywood, but each says it was a journey to become the strong, confident men they are today. In the above clip from "Oprah's Next Chapter," the actors talk about being bullied when they were growing up.
"I had people who bullied me, and I had someone who would push me and call me an expletive homosexual," Bucatinsky says. "I got called a lot of names. I got my face shoved in the snow, and my dad would try to get me to go out and fight my bully and I wouldn't."
Bucatinsky says he made a vow: "I remember promising myself that if there wasn't something at the other side of this, that if I wound up being gay at 18 and there wasn't something better, I would kill myself," he says.
"I didn't want to die and I wasn't suicidal, but I thought to myself, 'There's got to be… There has to be… This is so unjust,'' he says. "And it became a motivator."
Today, Bucatinsky has a husband and two children, and he embraces who he is. "That's the biggest turnaround," he says. "Yeah, I'm exactly what you called me. I'm a homosexual and I was in 10th grade and you called it exactly right."
Ferguson says he was also bullied and refused to let it tear him down. "It's all obviously different for every kid, and for me it shaped my character," he says. "It made me a stronger person. It made me want to succeed. It made me want to be an amazing actor and really accomplished ... All the things they tried to knock me down for just made me want to climb out and achieve those things."