"I’m here today because I am gay. And because…maybe I can make a difference. To help others have an easier and more hopeful time. Regardless, for me, I feel a personal obligation and a social responsibility."
Ellen Page came out on Valentine's Day while delivering a powerful speech at the Human Rights Campaign's Time to THRIVE conference. The 26-year-old actress became emotional while sharing her own story and opening up to the public about her sexuality.
"I am tired of hiding and I am tired of lying by omission. I suffered for years because I was scared to be out. My spirit suffered, my mental health suffered and my relationships suffered. And I’m standing here today, with all of you, on the other side of all that pain."
She gave shout outs to football star Michael Sam, actress Laverne Cox, and musicians Tegan and Sara, as inspiring figures in the media who take pride in speaking out for the LGBTQ community.
"There are too many kids out there suffering from bullying, rejection, or simply being mistreated because of who they are. Too many dropouts. Too much abuse. Too many homeless. Too many suicides. You can change that and you are changing it."
Congratulations, Ellen! You should be incredibly proud of yourself, and we're sure you've already inspired many who have been similarly struggling.