After coming out as transgender in December, Elliot Page says now that he had these feelings since he was a child.

“I knew I was a boy when I was a toddler,” the Umbrella Academy star told Vanity Fair. “I was writing fake love letters and signing them ‘Jason.’ Every little aspect of my life, that is who I was, who I am and who I knew myself to be.”

“I just couldn’t understand when I’d be told, ‘No you’re not. No, you can’t be that when you’re older.’ You feel it,” he described what it felt like as a child when he was told that his feelings were wrong. “It’s so beautiful and extraordinary and there’s grief to it in a way,”

“It’s hard to imagine that that’s not affecting the work,” he revealed. “Because, really, being present is ultimately what you’re going for – you’re just ultimately trying to crack open and be present and connect to the truth of the moment. So I’m imagining the more I get to embody who I am and exist in the body I want to exist in, there’ll be a difference.”

He added, “The most significant difference is that I’m really able to just exist. For the first time in, I don’t know how long, [I am] really just being able to sit by myself, be on my own, be productive and be creative. This is the first time I’ve even felt really present with people, that I can be just really relaxed and not have any anxiety that’s always pulling.”

The Oscar nominee also shared a clip from his interview with Oprah Winfrey for Apple TV+’s The Oprah Conversation.

“The rhetoric coming from anti-trans activists and anti-LGBTQ activists — it’s devastating,” Page said in the clip. “These bills are going to be responsible for the death of children. It is that simple. So [this interview] felt like an opportunity to use a wide-reaching platform to speak from my heart about some of my experience and the resources I’ve been able to access — whether therapy or surgery — that have allowed me to be alive, to live my life.”

Page felt that he needed to bring more awareness to help others like him struggling with their identity. “It felt important and selfish for myself and my own well-being and my mental health,” he said. “And also with this platform I have, the privilege that I have and knowing the pain and the difficulties and the struggles I faced in my life, let alone what so many other people are facing. it absolutely felt crucial and important for me to share that.”

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