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Modern Family star first 'came out' to dad during shoplifting drama

Modern Family star Jesse Tyler Ferguson's dad discovered his son was gay and a thief on the same day.

The actor admits he had built up quite a collection of stolen gay pornography magazines when he was finally caught trying to leave a store in his native Montana with a backpack pull of saucy publications at the age of 14.


In a recent an interview with Aisha Tyler for her Girl on Guy podcast, the red-faced star revealed, "I always considered that (incident) my coming out... It was so humiliating.


"I had been stealing porn for a while. I had quite a little collection. And I would bring it into the house, and then I'd get nervous, so I'd hide it under the mattress, or I'd hide it behind a shed in the backyard. And then it would get rained on, and I'd have to go get the barbecue tongs to (get it out)."


But when he got caught, he felt awful: "The woman (at the store) asked me if I had anything in my backpack. She was giving me the benefit of the doubt... She took me to the back room (and) they brought my dad in, and they showed him the nature of the material I was stealing, and it was really, really humiliating."


Ferguson admitted his dad took the drama quite well, adding, "(He) was like, 'OK, are you gay?' And I was, like, 14. I didn't really know. I didn't know what I was going through. But then in my later teen years I did come out to him (properly), and it was like he needed to be told three times.


"(When I was 21) he asked me if I had a girlfriend at the time, and I was like, 'Dad! You know I'm gay, right?'"


Ferguson married longtime partner Justin Mikita in New York in July, 2013.