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Ellen DeGeneres admitted that her feelings were hurt by Elton John's reaction to her coming out in 1997

Elton reportedly said “Shut up already. We know you are gay.”

One Voice: Somos Live! A Concert For Disaster Relief - Los Angeles Source: Kevin Winter/One Voice: Somos Live!

THIS WEEK, ELLEN DeGeneres sat down and had a chat with Dax Shepard on his podcast Armchair Expert.

A big part of their conversation was related to when Ellen DeGeneres confirmed “Yep, I’m Gay” on the cover of TIME magazine in 1997. After years of dodging questions about her private life, Ellen DeGeneres finally told the world that she was a lesbian.

It was a big deal to her, and to a lot of other people. There weren’t too many celebrities announcing that they were lesbians in the 1990s.

One Voice: Somos Live! A Concert For Disaster Relief - Los Angeles Source: Handout

Ellen told Dax that she wasn’t happy with how the world reacted to her coming out.

She found that the gay community, especially, weren’t very welcoming of her announcement. She spoke about how Elton John thought she should worry more about her career than telling the world that she’s a lesbian.

Even Elton John said “Shut up already. We know you’re gay. Be funny.”

The talk-show host was disappointed with Elton John’s response.

What kind of support is that from a gay person? But everybody assumed I was just non-stop talking about it. It hurt my feelings.

Shortly after Ellen came out, her TV show was cancelled. That, combined with the backlash she received, resulted in a period of depression for Ellen.

EllenDeGeneres-01 Source: Armchair Expert

No one would touch me. I had no agent. I had no possibility of a job. I had nothing. The gay community, it’s a really difficult line to walk. Some people thought “You’re not gay enough! You’re not doing enough for our community! There are so many that have done more!”
And I was just like… “I didn’t say I was your leader, and I didn’t say I have done more. I just want to be a comedian and I just happen to be gay.

Ellen also told the heartbreaking story of how she became a comedian after the death of her girlfriend when she was in her twenties.

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Kelly Earley

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