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Portia DeGeneres: Stress Over Sexuality Had Me Eating 300 Calories, Dropping To 82 Pounds

“It wasn’t that I was proud of it,” the newly renamed Portia DeGeneres (nee de Rossi) tells Oprah in an interview airing Monday about her anorexia. “But it was certainly a recognition for my self control. I definitely had some pretty amazing willpower to get down to 82 pounds. And that’s what I was holding on to. I didn’t think about anything else.” It required dropping her food intake down to a frightening 300 calories — part of which she blames on feelings of depression while struggling to come to terms with her sexuality.

And in an interview with Australia’s Women’s Weekly, Portia says she “was around 90 pounds and I remember feeling very afraid of food every night” while playing Nell Porter on Ally McBeal. It was during her marriage to documentarian Mel Metcalfe in the late 90s where she began confronting the reality of being gay, which she dealt with by not eating.

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14 Comments

  • Mark

    Portia seems to have deleted her 4 year lesbian relationship with Francesca Gregorini from her memory.
    She was with Francesca until she met Ellen.
    What gives?

  • Naya

    Ellen never mentions Alexandra Hedison either. Maybe they have some kind of pact, rumour does say they were both still in relationships/dating these women, when she and Ellen got together. I don’t know if that’s true, but it could be a possible reason.

  • JanisBing

    Apparently she discusses her relationship with Gregorini in her book (at least that’s what I got from AfterEllen’s review). I feel for her, I went through the exact same struggle but it’s still painful to watch in others. I hate that the world did this to her.

  • alan brickman

    being gay caused you to lose weight??…please….

  • Mark

    Being gay has less to do with her losing weight than working in Hollywood I suspect. Calista Flockhart and Courtney Thorne Smith both became seriously underweight while working on Ally McBeal akso.

  • ewe

    I don’t think i like her. She seems so damn self absorbed. Note to Portia: You are not the first lady of lesbian couples!!!

  • Lefty

    Yeah, let’s all slate the girl with an eating disorder.
    Way to go, guys!

    btw, what happened to the thumbs up/down thingy.
    Voting people up and down on here was my only intoxicating taste of true power.

  • Lefty

    You all would have got a thumb down, btw.
    Sorry :(

  • alan brickman

    The reason certain women watch Ellen is they have something in common with certain lesbians….they all hate men….

  • Jeffree

    Portia is brave to go public with her story. I hope her recovery will inspire other people to seek help for eating disorders.

  • Annoyed.

    “The reason certain women watch Ellen is they have something in common with certain lesbians….they all hate men….”

    and here i thought i watched it to look at ellen’s ass. go figure.
    not all men, just certain queerty commentators.

  • villager

    umm. no, alan, i don’t hate men. i hate dick. there’s a difference.

  • Stormy

    There are a lot of pigs that comment on this site! It is absolutely absurd and disgusting.

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