You might still be jumping for joy that The Fosters' Jonnor kiss finally happened in Season 2, but that doesn't mean the reality of Jude and Connor's future should be forgotten. It took almost two full seasons for The Fosters to finally address Jonnor's LGBT storyline and, in Season 3, the fact that these two characters have told each other the truth about how they feel doesn't mean they're ready to tell the world. Series' star Hayden Byerly weighs in on Jude's concerns about Jonnor on The Fosters Season 3 and why it took so long for ABC Family to get them together in the first place.
"One of the biggest reasons was that Jude is very young," Byerly says of why The Fosters waited quite so long to reveal that the pair had kissed during that camping trip. "Even at 13, I don’t think that many people are able to determine their sexuality, let alone come out as gay or bisexual or straight or whatever they are," the 14-year-old actors explains, "I don’t think they wanted to just jump into a relationship with these two characters without showing the process of figuring everything out." And that's something that Byerly feels is extremely important in accurately portraying what Jonnor is going through.
"It’s not that easy — for some people it’s much harder than waking up and knowing who you are," he says, "It takes time and it takes a lot of work to bring yourself to a place where you’re comfortable telling people." But the challenges are truly just beginning for Jonnor when The Fosters returns on June 8 — especially for Jude.
"I think Jude thinks that Connor will be much more accepted than him because of who Connor is and the reputation he’s already built at school," Byerly says about the Season 3 premiere's synopsis stating that Jude will be reluctant to be public with their relationship. "Jude is very smart and he knows that if he does come out as gay, that people will probably bully him for it," the actor says, after reminding me that Jude's faced bullying before just for being himself, "He’s very torn between what to do, but in the end he just wants to be safe. And I think that not telling them is his idea of being safe."
If you're a diehard Fosters fan, this might not seem like the Jude we know and love — the same character who went mute for a handful of episodes and who painted his nails and owned it, even standing up to Callie when she tried to advise him against it. But, for Byerly, Jude's decision to keep his relationship private is a matter of his happiness. "He’s in a happy place and he’s in a good place and it doesn’t matter whether all of these other kids know," Byerly says, "The only thing that’s important is that his family knows, that Connor knows, and that he knows."
Byerly also adds that Connor's reputation is another reason he'll be reluctant to share his sexuality with his peers. "Jude thinks that Connor will be much more accepted than him because of who Connor is," he says, "He feels that Connor won’t get any of the hate or any of the bad towards him."
So, what does this mean for the couple? "He does want Connor to know that he takes their relationship very seriously, but he also doesn’t want to have to go through a lot of these things that a lot of gay kids or even adults go through," the actor says. However, we shouldn't start to worry about the success of this 'ship yet — if Connor could be true to himself in spite of his father's views, it's a safe bet to assume that he'll help Jude through his fears in Season 3 as well.
Images: Ron Tom/ABC Family; thefosters-onabcfamily/Tumblr (2)