AceShowbiz - Elliot Page was so surprised by the incessant reactions to his transition. After coming out as transgender back in December 2020, the star of Netflix's "The Umbrella Academy" revealed that while he received lots of support, he still had to deal with hatred and cruel threats.
The 35-year-old actor opened up about the matter in a cover interview for the Summer issue of Esquire magazine. Acknowledging that his coming out as a trans elicited more extreme responses if compared to his coming out as a lesbian in 2014, he spilled, "I didn't expect it to be so big."
"In terms of the actual quality of the response, it was what I expected: love and support from many people and hatred and cruelty and vitriol from so many others," Elliot, who was born Ellen Page, explained. "I came out as gay in 2014, and it's different. Transphobia is just so, so, so extreme. The hatred and the cruelty is so much more incessant."
Elliot continued by bringing up his own experience as a small example of what trans people have to deal with on daily basis. "This really big dude, less than an arm's length away, was just screaming at me, 'You faggot! Don't look at me! You faggot, faggot!' I couldn't even just go, like, I'm not looking at you. It was the one time I'd left the hotel that whole day," he recalled.
"I was just trying to cross the street, and I couldn't because it was Sunset Boulevard and there's traffic, so I decided in my brain - because he was so tall - that I couldn't do anything physically. If I said something, he could retaliate. If I turned around, that could trigger something else," the Academy Award nominee went on. "So I thought, I'm just going to have to bet on standing completely still and staring straight ahead."
"And then eventually, after him yelling, 'Faggot! Faggot! Faggot!' some more, he started to walk off and I started to cross the street. And then he just started screaming, behind me, 'I'm gonna kill you, you f**king faggot! I'm gonna kill you, you f**king faggot! I'm gonna gay-bash you!' So I ran - I was alone - I ran into a convenience store, and as I was opening the door he yelled, 'This is why I need a gun!' "
Elliot further shared how he relates to cis men who have to live in a society where gender gives so much restraint, suppression and repression that stemmed from people's expectation. "When I came out, I posted a selfie with a thank-you note, just to show how much all the love and support meant," he gave another example of what he had gone through.
"And I saw this comment - I should very much not be looking at the comments, but this guy said, 'Oh, yeah, as if a guy would ever write something sensitive like that.' I feel bad for that guy," he continued. "I feel bad that he's been brought up in a society that equates masculinity with emotionlessness. That's a really shitty way to live, because it's going to come out in another direction, and another."
Regardless of what happened, Elliot did not regret coming out as a trans. "I can't overstate the biggest joy, which is really seeing yourself," the "Juno" star stressed when sharing what he learned from transitioning. "I know I look different to others, but to me I'm just starting to look like myself. It's indescribable, because I'm just like, there I am. And thank God. Here I am."
"So the greatest joy is just being able to feel present, literally, just to be present. To go out in a group of new people and be able to engage in a way where I didn't feel this constant sensation to flee from my body, this never-ending sensation of anxiety and nervousness and wanting out," he elaborated more. "When I say I couldn't have ever imagined feeling that way, I mean that with every sense of me."