Phillip Schofield, the co-host of British television show ITV’s This Morning, has come out as gay.
Schofield, 57, shared the news on Friday morning’s episode of the show, and also shared a statement on his Instagram Story as well as on This Morning‘s Twitter account.
“You never know what’s going on in someone’s seemingly perfect life, what issues they are struggling with, or the state of their wellbeing — and so you won’t know what has been consuming me for the last few years,” he wrote. “With the strength and support of my wife and my daughters, I have been coming to terms with the fact that I am gay.”
Schofield explained that he has been married to his wife, Steph, for almost 27 years, and the couple shares two adult daughters.
“My inner conflict contrasts with an outside world that has changed so very much for the better,” he continued. “Today, quite rightly, being gay is a reason to celebrate and be proud. Yes, I am feeling pain and confusion, but that comes only from the hurt that I am causing to my family.”
“Steph has been incredible — I love her so very much. She is the kindest soul I have ever met. My girls have been astonishing in their love, hugs and encouraging words of comfort, ” Schofield added. “At ITV, I couldn’t hope to work with more wonderful, supportive teams.”
The television personality concluded his post by saying: “Every day on This Morning, I sit in awe of those we meet who have been brave and open in confronting their truth — so now it’s my turn to share mine. This will probably all come as something of a surprise and I understand, but only by facing this, by being honest, can I hope to find peace in my mind and a way forward.”
Schofield has hosted This Morning since 2002. On Friday’s show, he made his announcement alongside his co-host, Holly Willoughby.
Schofield told Willoughby during the show that he’s felt “lighter” since coming out, according to The Guardian.
“The thing is you know this has been bothering me for a very long time, everybody does these things at their own speed, when they think the time is right,” he said. “It has consumed my head, and has become an issue in my head.”
The outlet also reported that Willoughby said she could “feel the relief” he felt and said she would support him “forever and ever.”