“A lot of it was like, ‘If you ever feel forgotten, remember this guy.’ Or, ‘Frankie Jonas is a talentless sack of s—,'” he said.
For years, Frankie Jonas was dubbed “the Bonus Jonas” of his famous brothers. In a new interview, the social star revealed his distaste for the moniker and said constantly being compared to Nick, Joe, and Kevin took a toll on his mental health.
“I always hated that nickname,” he told Bustle. “A lot of my problem with being in the public eye was that I was seen as this commodified vision of myself.”
Frankie was only a kid when his older siblings’ band the Jonas Brothers became hugely popular. And though fans called him “the Bonus Jonas” out of affection, he said social media was a different story.
As a tween, he downloaded Twitter and searched for his name, finding “all pretty awful things for a 12-year-old to read.” People mocked him for his weight and joked about him being the least famous of his siblings.
“A lot of it was like, ‘If you ever feel forgotten, remember this guy.’ Or, ‘Frankie Jonas is a talentless sack of s—,'” he told the outlet.
“It became a form of self-harm to look at these things,” Frankie continued. “Then it became essentially an OCD, like a tic. I couldn’t stop. I checked it every day, and I had to, to feel okay in a way. It really became a serious issue for me. A lot of that perpetuated the idea that I was just this meme. I was this joke, and my entire identity to people was ‘adjacent,’ which really affected myself and the way that I thought about the world and the way I felt about myself.”
Frankie spent years either running away from the spotlight on his famous family or using the Jonas name in a way that only left him uncomfortable. Looking back, he’s able to laugh at his past mistakes.
“That was my biggest issue with my name and with my public image. The second that people knew who my family was or who I was, I felt that connection, that tether of empathy, get cut,” he said.
Now 20, Frankie is a star in his own right. He boasts nearly 2 million followers on his main TikTok, and his two other accounts also have significant followings.
“Everything that I talk about on TikTok… no one knew that that was how I speak, how I express myself, what I think is funny,” he said. “I was just making jokes, thinking no one was hearing them. And then people heard them and liked them. I thought, ‘I’m going to continue to do this,’ because I’ve never had my thing really. This feels like so much of my thing. It feels so empowering to have a thing.”
Joe also spoke to Bustle, saying that he stopped calling Frankie by his famous nickname after his younger sibling confided in him.
“I refused to call Frankie ‘Bonus Jonas’ after he opened up to me about how that was hurtful to him,” Joe said. “It completely makes sense, and we’ve had lengthy conversations and apologies behind closed doors that showcased my understanding and respect for his wishes. I think to feel like you are second, third, or fourth best from something is unfair; we are all equals.”
Source: By Rachel Yang | ew.com