Outlander star Sam Heughan recently opened up about being bullied and harassed on social media. His co-star, Caitriona Balfe, shared her support for the actor and slammed online trolls for their “mean” behavior.
Sam Heughan writes an emotional post about being bullied online
In a lengthy post, shared on both Twitter and Instagram, Heughan opened up about the years of harsh and unwarranted criticism he’s faced from fans online. “After the past 6 years of constant bullying, harassment, stalking and false narrative I am at a loss, upset, hurt and have to speak out. It’s affecting my life, mental state and is a daily concern,” Heughan wrote in the post. “My costars, friends, family, myself, in fact, anyone I’m associated with, has been subjected to personal slurs, shaming, abuse, death threats, stalking, sharing of private information and vile, false narrative.”
The actor also mentioned that some of the threats and harassment have forced him to take legal action. “I’ve never spoken about it because I believe in humanity and have always hoped these bullies would just go away,” he wrote. “I can’t elaborate for ongoing legal reasons but they are professionals: teachers, psychologists, adults who should know better.”
Heughan also revealed that online trolls bully him about his integrity and sexuality, and have recently started harassing him for choosing to self-isolate in Hawaii during the COVID-19 pandemic. “Recently, these false claims vary from me manipulating fans, being a closet-homosexual, trying to mislead or exhort fans for money and disregarding COVID advice,” Heughan added. “I’ve done none [sic] of the above. I’m a normal guy and nothing like the characters I play.”
The Outlander star also revealed that people have stalked his residences, shared his private information, created false narratives about him and his colleagues, and have tried to hack his personal accounts. He ended the post with an appreciative message for the fans that support him.
“To every fan that has supported me and the work I do, THANK YOU,” he wrote. “I’m so grateful, from the bottom of my heart. Stay safe and please be kind to yourself and each other.”
Heughan’s ‘Outlander’ co-star Caitriona Balfe defends and supports his sentiments
Soon after Heughan shared his post, Balfe, who plays his wife Claire on Outlander, retweeted it. She took the opportunity to show support for her co-star while slamming all the haters who harass him.
“Sad that Sam has had to come out and say all this,” Balfe wrote in her tweet. “I would have thought mean bitchy behaviour would have been left in the school yard. But unfortunately, a VERY SMALL but very vocal part of this fandom use their energy to write and say awful untrue things.”
In her post, Balfe suggested the online bullies use their energy for good instead of hate. “Maybe they should harness all that energy to get involved in their local charities,” she added. “And honestly it’s quite simple … If you don’t like us… it’s a big beautiful world out there. Find something you do love and enjoy that. Life, as it’s all too clear right now, is short. Why waste it hating.”