On Sex and the City, fan-favorite character Stanford Blatch — played by beloved actor Willie Garson — was romantically involved with his love interest, Marcus, during the show’s fifth season. But when it comes to real life, fans can’t help but wonder: was the late sitcom star in love, or did he ever get married?
By the looks of reports, Willie never said “I do” during his 57 years of life. However, he did experience the joys of fatherhood, adopting his son, Nathen Garson, as a single dad in 2009. Sadly, the New Jersey native died in September 2021, with Nathen confirming the news on Instagram.
“I love you so much, papa. Rest In Peace, and I’m so glad you got to share all your adventures with me and were able to accomplish so much. I’m so proud of you,” the heartbroken son penned alongside photos of Willie, adding, “it’s time for you to go on an adventure of your own.”
“You’ll always be with me. Love you more than you will ever know,” Nathen continued. “You always were the toughest and funniest and smartest person I’ve known. I’m glad you shared you’re [sic] love with me. I’ll never forget it or lose it.”
In his emotional tribute, Nathen said he was “glad” his dad could “be at peace now,” referring to his pancreatic cancer diagnosis. People confirmed the White Collar alum died following a short illness.
Willie didn’t get the chance to walk down the aisle before his heartbreaking death, and he also held off from ever getting engaged. Despite his interest in dating, Willie said playing his character of Stanford, Carrie Bradshaw’s gay best friend, actually hindered his love life.
“At the beginning, you would approach someone at a bar and realize, ‘Oh, they want to be Stanford’s best friend,'” he told Page Six in October 2020 of how portraying a gay man got in the way of dating. “They don’t necessarily want to sleep with you.”
Willie didn’t want his character to define his life, but because he was worried how SATC viewers would react, he didn’t speak about his sexuality — and that fact that he was actually straight — “for years,” he told the outlet. “I didn’t talk about it because I found it to be offensive to gay people. People playing gay characters jumping up and down screaming that they’re not gay, like that would somehow be a bad thing if they were.”
Though Willie kept many details of his dating life out of the spotlight, he flaunted his love as a father to the world when he welcomed Nathen into his life more than a decade ago. Speaking with Page Six, the actor said he was inspired to adopt Nathen when a “long [on-and-off] relationship” he was in “for like 20 years” came to an end.
“She never wanted to have a child, which is fine,” he said of the mystery lady, explaining how their breakup led to becoming a dad. “And it was like my mid-life crisis. Like, I really wanted a child more than anything else. And I got one and we’re partners, my kid and I.”