Entertainment » Celebrities

Portia de Rossi ’Didn’t Want’ to be a Lesbian

by Michael  Cox
Contributor
Wednesday Nov 20, 2013
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  (Source:AP Photo/Jeff Christiansen)

’’I just didn’t want to be a lesbian," said Portia de Rossi in an intimate interview on "The Conversation With Amanda De Cadenet". "I’d never met one for a start and I just thought they were strange and that they hated men and they were very serious."

It isn’t surprising that such a definition would turn-off a woman whose charm and humor have entertained millions of television viewers around the world in hit television comedies like "Arrested Development" and "Ally McBeal."

"I had these ridiculous images in my head," continued de Rossi, "and there were no out celebrities or politicians or anybody that I could look to and go, ’Oh, I could be like that.’ There was nobody that I could say, ’I could date her and I want to be like her.’"

One very popular television figure changed all that. In 1997, Ellen DeGeneres became the first out-gay leading character in a television show. And de Rossi not only dated her, she married her in 2008. They’ve been happily married ever since.

Keeping her sexuality a secret had severe effects on de Rossi’s well being, she feels, leading to an eating disorder between 1998 to 2002 when she was on "Ally McBeal."

’’I just kind of thought I don’t want to live like this," said the actress. "I don’t have to, I don’t need to, I just shut down [my] emotional life.’’

"Having to hide something like [my sexuality] just ruined me. It really, really killed me," de Rossi told Oprah in 2010.

Since coming out, de Rossi’s life has improved dramatically, and she firmly believes in the important role of being an out person and celebrity.

"I really, honestly think that anybody who is openly gay and visible is powerful," she told Out magazine earlier this year. "It doesn’t matter what you do, you are impacting people."


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