As we know, there is broad array of emotions a parent may experience when his/her child comes out. Ellen DeGeneres came out, in a very public way, in 1997, and she recently said in a new interview that her father found having an openly gay daughter to be quite a challenge.
Ellen told HELLO!: “My parents divorced when I was young – they were very different personalities. My mother is a strong woman, sarcastic and sassy, and I learnt how to be a tough woman from her. My dad is a wonderful man but he has a lot of fear and he was overprotective of me. He didn’t want me to hurt myself so he wanted me to be nice and quiet all the time and not really argue or speak my opinion. So imagine his challenge of having an openly gay child.”
She continues: “When you’re growing up, whatever your environment is, if you don’t know any different, that is what it is. I didn’t know anything was wrong until I got older and I started doing some soul-searching and read some books. I learnt a lot of lessons the hard way, which is a beautiful way to learn them.”
Since then, Ellen married Portia de Rossi in 2008. Ellen shared: “Now I have Portia in my life, I’ve been forced to grow a great deal, because I’ve learnt that you can’t really get anything from anyone unless you have something to give to them. So I come to this relationship as a whole person, which I wasn’t ever before. She and I both support each other and we both believe in each other and it’s great.”