Portia DeGeneres: Being Gay Led to My Anorexia

In Celebs by KGaz , on Saturday, October 30, 2010, 6:58 AM (PDT)
portia degeneres
Portia and Ellen DeGeneres:


Portia DeGeneres reveals how sexuality struggles can affect health.

Portia DeGeneres has hit a hot-button issue in her new book, "Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain." In the book, Portia (whose name is listed as her former "De Rossi" on the book's jacket) discusses the incredible emotional struggles that happen when a young adult grapples with homosexuality. DeGeneres experienced an ongoing battle, as she's shared in a new magazine interview.

Details on Portia DeGeneres' Tell-All

Portia DeGeneres was married to a man before she finally came to accept that she was gay. Portia has revealed that in her teens, she wrestled with her identity so fiercely that she decided to change her name from Amanda Lee Rogers to the more exotic, confident Portia de Rossi.

In an interview with Women's Weekly, DeGeneres is detailing her struggle with sexuality which manifested itself through a life-threatening eating disorder during her tenure on "Ally McBeal":

"It took a long, long time for me to think I had a problem," Portia said. "I was around 90 pounds and I remember feeling very afraid of food every night ... I didn't want to walk past pizza restaurants because that would make me remember what it was like to eat pizza, and I was truly afraid that I was going to be overcome with the urge to binge, and if I started binging then I just wouldn't stop."

Portia first met now-wife Ellen DeGeneres in 2004, but rejected Ellen's invitation to a party with friends back then -- today Portia explains:

"I was too nervous ... It was a ridiculous thought for me to be closeted and terrified of being discovered, and then date the most famous lesbian in the world. It wasn't going to happen. I had such a long way to go before I could even be seen in public with a woman, much less be seen in public with that one."

It took four years for Portia de Rossi and Ellen DeGeneres to meet again, but in August 2009, they were married. Fully embracing her love for her wife, Portia recently took Ellen's last name.

Read: Portia de Rossi Changes Name to Portia DeGeneres



Portia DeGeneres' book was published by Atria, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. Author Jonathan Safran Foer called Portia's account "brutal and beautiful," while bestselling memoirist Jeanette Walls has said readers "will cheer her on" as they read.

Flip through our slideshow of celebs who have recently spoken out for sexual equality, and hit the blue links for more de-generous Portia dish!

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