Greg Rikaart, Elizabeth Hendrickson, Tracey Bregman, Chrsitian LeBlanc"The Young and the Restless" Set CBS television CityLos Angeles09/09/21© Howard Wise/jpistudios.com310-657-9661
Credit: Howard Wise/JPI

It’s a time for celebration… but also concern.

As LGBTQ+ Pride Month got underway, Greg Rikaart was called upon to think about what it really means to him. “The words that come to mind,” he said during the June 1 episode of The Locher Room, “are freedom, safety, being able to self-celebrate without shame and being able to love and just feel… part of a community that’s greater than your immediate family, even your extended family.

“And strength,” he added, “because we are a force to be reckoned with. Let them come at us with these Don’t Say Gay bills and watch what happens.”

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Though the Young & Restless and Days of Our Lives star has lived through some joyous victories in his time — “When I was in my early 20s, there was no such thing as gay marriage” — he had to admit that the current climate in the United States gives him pause. “What concerns me about what’s happening now is the fragility of our safety — not just for members of the LGBTQ+ community,” he said. “Things that seem to be set in stone… are now up for debate, and it puts everybody at risk.”

In particular, the most vulnerable members of our society. “With these bills, [emboldened are] people who think it’s OK to bully and mistreat people who are different,” Kevin and Leo’s portrayer noted. And as for those who are different, “it puts those people at risk.

“As a grownup, I have the wherewithal to know that I am secure and comfortable, and my life is going to be fine, but,” he added, “kids don’t know that.” So understandably, he shares the common fear that suicide rates may spike, especially among LGBTQ+ youngsters. “It’s very concerning.”

Rikaart, who recently celebrated his seventh wedding anniversary with Robert Sudduth (a TV writer/producer whose credits include the much missed Real O’Neals and  Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist), has been with his partner since 2005. Or maybe it was 2006 — he confessed that was never 100-percent sure. The couple’s son, Monte, turns 6 this week.


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Celebrate Pride with the below photo gallery of some of the most impactful LGBTQ+ characters in soap history.

Video: YouTube/The Locher Room