Gay marriage is a hot button issue in the media right now because of the two cases before the Supreme Court. As gay marriage is being so hotly contested, Susan Olsen, who played Cindy on the Brady Bunch, has penned an open letter to her TV dad, Robert Reed, who was gay.
"As a child, I was BLESSED to have another father figure in my life. He did not replace my own beloved, Norwegian version of Jed Clampett, nor would he have wanted to. He simply harmonized with all of my family values and brought his own heart to our table," Olsen wrote on her Facebook page. "This tempetuous actor who bottle fed puppies when he wasn’t quarreling with the heads of networks shaped my heart as much as my biological parents did. So I really can honestly say, ‘My dad was gay.'"
"Being gay killed him. Because it was so taboo, he could never make peace with himself. He never allowed himself to have a genuine love. He was forever taunted by his own disdain for the natural inclinations that he was BORN WITH. Bob was a family man. Had he been allowed to form a relationship with another man, he would have been the best husband ever and might still be alive," Olsen continued. "But Bob could not be at peace with this because the people surrounding him shoved their own judgment down his throat and, sadly, he bought into it. He thought he was wrong."
Reed died in 1992 from colon cancer, never publically coming out as gay. His autopsy revealed that he was HIV positive and that was a "significant condition contributing to death."