Elliot Page is using his spotlight to bring awareness to the many forms of discrimination transgender people face. In a new Time magazine cover story, the Umbrella Academy actor opened up about his experience in order to educate others about the importance of transgender and non-binary health care. “We know who we are,” Page, 34, said. “People cling to these firm ideas [about gender] because it makes people feel safe. But if we could just celebrate all the wonderful complexities of people, the world would be such a better place.” Page revealed that top surgery provided the release he’s been desperate for since the “total hell” of puberty. “It has completely transformed my life,” he told Time. Page was recovering at the time he posted his disclosure, a moving letter, on Instagram December 1.
On February 25, the day Dr. Rachel Levine, now the highest-ranking openly trans official in U.S. history, was faced with a transphobic rant about “genital mutilation,” during her confirmation hearing, Elliot Page was speaking with Time, “determined” to emphasize the importance of medical care. For him, it was “not only life-changing but lifesaving.” Page stressed that surgery isn’t a necessary part of being trans. For many, it’s completely unnecessary. But others face huge barriers, namely affordability and harassment. A lack of access to medical care is considered to be one of reasons 41 percent of transgender people have attempted suicide, according to the National Trans Discrimination Survey. “My privilege has allowed me to have resources to get through and to be where I am today,” Page said, “and of course I want to use that privilege and platform to help in the ways I can.”