Rowan Blanchard said she identifies as queer in a January tweet

By Lindsay Kimble
Updated March 07, 2016 10:30 AM
Credit: Stefanie Keenan/Getty

Rowan Blanchard may be only 14, but the Girl Meets World actress is wise beyond her years when it comes to managing fame and her online presence – especially after using social media to open up about her sexuality.

The Disney Channel star told Wonderland magazine in a new interview that she came under fire online after tweeting in January that she identifies as queer.

“In my life – only ever liked boys,” she wrote at the time. “However I personally don’t wanna label myself as straight, gay or whateva so I am not gonna give myself labels to stick with – just existing.”

She later added that she was “open to liking any gender in the future.”

Blanchard revealed to Wonderland that she was attacked by her followers for the admission.

“I’m okay with it now, but I still realize that I was allowing people to comment on something that’s very personal,” she explained. “The first day I tweeted about it, it was definitely scary to see people commenting about things that literally have nothing to do with them.”

Blanchard admitted that fame can “open up a can of worms” and makes her vulnerable to criticism.

“I have to stop reading comments because there’s a lot of good ones but then when you see one bad one like, ‘Oh you look ugly,’ that’s what’s going to stick with you,” Blanchard said. “I try to only respond to people when it’s something positive, which is difficult because a part of me really wants to call people out when they do things that are mean.”

“But I’m trying, I guess, to restructure Instagram and Twitter to a place where, yes – you can be subject to other people’s opinions – but you can also think, ‘I’m gonna use this word or image again, like a protest,’ because if you’re just continuing to do what you’re doing then people will start to realize that you’re not doing it for them.” she added.

Regardless, the teenager said she thinks social media can be a “tool for people in my age group” to find need-to-know information about important political issues.

VIDEO: YouTube Star Joey Graceffa on Coming out as Gay: ‘I Was Hiding’

“I learned through social media that we often talk about America like it’s a totally equal place, but that’s not always the case,” she said. “You think certain things happen in third-world countries or places that are really far away from where you live, but through social media I realized that things are happening right in front of me.”