Ellen Page Comes Out as Gay: "Maybe I Can Make a Difference" -- Watch Her Emotional Speech

Celebrity News Feb. 15, 2014 AT 10:15AM

Ellen Page made Valentine's Day a little bit sweeter with her honest and difficult omission. The 26-year-old actress officially came out as a lesbian at the Human Rights Campaign's Time to THRIVE Conference on Feb. 14. 

In an emotional speech, Page opened by discussing her industry's challenging, unrealistic portrayal of people.

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"It’s weird because here I am, an actress, representing -- at least in some sense -- an industry that places crushing standards on all of us," she admitted. "Not just young people, but everyone. Standards of beauty. Of a good life. Of success. Standards that, I hate to admit, have affected me."

The visibly nervous star waited until five minutes into her speech to declare, "I am 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." 

The Oscar nominated actress, who has been linked to major stars like Alexander Skarsgard, Elijah Wood, and Emile Hirsch, said the false relationship rumors also played a factor in her decision to publicly come out. 

Actress Ellen Page announces she's gay at the Human Rights Campaign's Time to Thrive Conference, on Friday, February, 14, 2014 in Las Vegas.
Actress Ellen Page announces she's gay at the Human Rights Campaign's Time to Thrive Conference, on Friday, February, 14, 2014 in Las Vegas.
Credit: Jeff Bottari/AP Images for Human Rights Campaign

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"I also do it selfishly because I'm tired of hiding and I'm tired of lying by omission," Page revealed. "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 that pain."

The X-Men: Days of Future Past star even got sentimental on the holiday of love. 

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"I am young yes, but what I have learned is that love -- the beauty of it, the joy of it, yes even the pain of it -- is the most incredible gift to give and to receive as a human being," she said. "And we deserve to experience love fully, equally, and without shame and without compromise."

Following Page's big reveal, the audience gave her a warm standing ovation, which continued on Twitter with some A-List fans. 

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Mia Farrow congratulated the young star, tweeting "Beautiful, eloquent speech!!  We love you @ellenpage."

And actress Kate Mara tweeted, "Hey @EllenPage…Be my Valentine? #respect," to which Page replied, "yes please." 

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