QUEER VOICES

Ellen Page And Co-Host Ian Daniel Open Up About Confronting Prejudice While Filming 'Gaycation'

"I hope that it, absolutely, will change."

Ellen Page's newest project as a host on "Gaycation," a VICELAND series where she and her best friend, Ian Daniel, explore LGBTQ cultures around the world, has exposed her to some of the harder experiences queers often have to face.

While speaking to host Caroline Modarressy-Tehrani last week, the actress described moments of defeat she felt while filming. She mentioned a specific instance in the United States episode where she's speaking with "sweet, lovely lovely" people who are fundamentally against LGBT rights.  

"The unfortunate part of it is when we're talking to that family, I do believe I say, 'You're such lovely people and you've welcomed us here but I know you look at me and your belief is that there's something wrong with me,' and that's hard," the actress said.

Page opened up about trying to reach a common understanding with this family but ultimately being unable to. 

"It's hard when you really try and pour your heart out and ask, 'Just why does it affect you or bother you so much if I was to want to marry my girlfriend someday?,'" she said. "And it is hard when you ... don't feel like there's an ability to connect."

Daniel, the show's co-host who joined HuffPost Live alongside Page, explained the difficult dichotomy they felt with people who may be "preaching love" but acting with prejudice. 

"We're just experiencing a wall sometimes," he said. "It's like the energy seems loving but the language and what they're actually saying is unloving and it's unaccepting and I just think you're always going to have that."

Some of the most difficult experiences Page witnessed was in seeing those living in "extreme devastation who face severe violence every day" for being queer.

"When you meet someone who's had acid thrown on them, or a [homeless] girl we met who, this is in Jamaica, ... had been shot days before," Page said. "Or interviewing a mother who's lost a child to a hate crime. Those are moments, absolutely, where you feel a sense of despair."

While the actress tries to make sense of the plight many LGBTQ people face all over the world, she said she stays optimistic thinking about how far this country has come. 

"I hope that it, absolutely, will change and if we look at the progress that's happened in this country, it's been unbelievable," Page said. "So I think that makes me feel optimistic. That's what I think I hold onto and thanks to, obviously, all the extraordinary people who've fought for equality."

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