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‘Friends’ star Jane Sibbett reveals dad told her playing lesbian on TV was ‘wrong’

The actress played Carol, ex-wife of Ross (David Schwimmer), on the iconic sitcom.

By Jamie Tabberer

Friends star Jane Sibbett has revealed that she faced a backlash from her own father for playing a lesbian on the hit TV show.

Sibbett, 57, played Carol, the ex-wife of Ross (David Schwimmer), from 1994-2001.

She was a mum to Ben (Cole and Dylan Sprouse) and was famously in a relationship with partner Susan (Jessica Hecht), who she wed in a 1996 episode notable as one of the first onscreen depictions of a same-sex wedding in the US.

In a new interview with Now To Love, Jane reflected on the pushback she received for playing the character. 

Jessica Hecht as Susan, David Schwimmer as Ross and Jane Sibbett as carol on Friends (Picture: NBC)

“It became apparent soon after [beginning to play Carol] there was suddenly a responsibility about being able to stand up against all of the people that were saying this was wrong,” she said. “Including my own father who had a really hard time with that.

“I was going toe to toe with people on talk shows in America,” she added, “who were saying, you know, this and this and this is the reason why you shouldn’t be doing this.”

“I would have to break things down for them. And I felt like it was really important for me to be super clear; love is the most important, of all the things that we could possibly do love is the most important way forward from anybody.

“So, that was my biggest responsibility, to make sure that people knew that.”

Jane also spoke about her most famous role in an interview last year, telling Today: “Carol is a woman who followed her own heart.

“She was in love with her husband and then she fell in love with a woman.

“She wasn’t any kind of stereotype. She was just a woman who fully loved.”