Denis O'Hare met his husband Hugo Redwood online 15 years ago. An actor and designer respectively, having kids together wasn't originally in their plans. But eventually they decided to begin the arduous foster-to-adoption process with their son Declan. In the #HowWeFamily series, a new campaign from Tylenol that celebrates familes, we witness the stories of a cross-section of 21st century Americans and the diversity of their lives that all include loving bonds. In the new spot released today, the couple shares their story of being an interracial gay couple with an African-American son. O'Hare says he doesn't have to seek permission from anyone to fall in love or have a family, although he had to overcome some of his own internal biases. "I became a parent the minute Declan was put into my arms," O'Hare explains, choking up. "He's my son."
"I was wary when I was approached to do this. I wasn’t sure what they were getting out of it or I was going to achieve," O'Hare tells Out. "But after going through this process, I have to say, I find it extraordinary as a brand and company and organization are doing the correct thing, and a brave thing, by risking their brand reputation to be a voice of equality, tolerance, and diversity. It’s not a small thing, because not everyone can do it or does do it. It’s not simply about marriage equality and identity politics — it’s about different perspectives. It doesn’t seem like the proper place for a corporation but they are leading by example."
The moving spot shows a side of the actor that many may not be familiar with, since his characters on TV — including True Blood and American Horror Story — have often been quite sinister and sometimes frightening. But O'Hare hopes people do hear his personal story and take some inspiration to be live their lives fully. "I don’t feel like I speak as an authority for anyone, I’m just speaking for myself," he says. "But I’m happy to be part of a conversation where I speak about my experience, or alter their consciousness or feel emboldened to discuss their experience."
Watch the video below: