Wil Wheaton Shares Touching Moment With Jerry O'Connell After Abuse Apology

Former Stand By Me co-stars Wil Wheaton and Jerry O'Connell shared an emotional moment during Thursday's episode of The Talk. Appearing on the CBS talk show, which O'Connell co-hosts, the longtime friends discussed Wheaton's confession last year that he suffered "emotional abuse" as a child, with O'Connell taking a moment to apologize for "not being there more " for Wheaton amid his childhood abuse.

In the touching moment, O'Connell acknowledged, "I heard before you talk about some of the struggles you were going through during Stand by Me." While the actor noted that he was 11 years old at the time they filmed the popular movie, he told Wheaton that he wanted "to apologize for not being there more for you when you were younger," adding, "but I want to say, to the bigger picture, you never know what someone is going through when you're with them. I don't feel guilt, but I just want to say I'm sorry I wasn't there for you more."

The touching on-air moment came after Wheaton, in an interview with Yahoo Entertainment in May, opened up about the abuse he endured from his parents during his childhood. Wheaton told the outlet that he suffered "a combination of an incredible emotional abuse from my father and a lot of manipulation, using me, from my mother." Wheaton, who also revealed his parents "forced" him into acting, said the abuse "put me in the exact place to play Gordie," his character on Stand By Me, "because Gordie's experience very much reflected my experience. We're both invisible in our homes. We both have a brother who is the golden child. We're both the scapegoat in the family." He added that when he watched the popular film now, "I cannot ignore the unbelievable sadness in my eyes."

Following the confession, O'Connell addressed the revelation on an episode of The Talk just a week later, telling his co-hosts that he "had no idea he was feeling this when we were doing this film." O'Connell shared, "I love Wil. He's a great friend of mine."

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Following his apology on Thursday, Wheaton told O'Connell he "deeply" appreciated the kind words, adding, "You were 11. How could you have possibly known?" Speaking directly to the audience, he continued, "Also, everyone in the audience who is a trauma survivor knows this: We're real, real, real good at covering up what we're going through."