The beauty vlogger sat down with Ellen DeGeneres on Wednesday and got candid about her journey.
The 25-year-old YouTuber and make-up artist, whose real name is Nikkie de Jager, sat down with Ellen DeGeneres on Wednesday's episode of Ellen, and opened up about growing up transgender, and how she was essentially forced into coming out publicly.
According to de Jager, she took to YouTube with her 17-minute "I'm Coming Out" video, which she posted on Jan. 13, after being blackmailed.
"A couple of weeks ago I got emails from a certain person and he was not OK with the fact that I was 'lying' and he wanted to expose that," de Jager shared. "So he had a very pressuring tone of voice and he was like, 'If we don't get an answer by tomorrow, it's out.'"
"I feel like his entire goal with this was to destroy my life. But, plot twist, that didn't happen!" she added.
The beauty vlogger explained as much in her original video, sharing, "We live in a world where other people hate on people that are truly themselves. I have been blackmailed by people that wanted to leak my story to the press… And at first it was frightening... to know that there are people out there that are so evil that they can't respect someone's true identity… They feel like I'm too scared for people to know who I truly am. I'm not scared."
However, de Jager admitted that posting the video made filled her with anxiety.
"I remember uploading the video, I was like, 'Oh, I cannot do it!' And I started crying. My fiance Dylan was right next to me and he was like, 'You can do it.' So he really pushed me to post it," she recalled to DeGeneres. "He was like, 'We're going to get through this. You're gonna be okay.'"
While she waited for the feedback from her followers with a mixture of fear, concern and trepidation, the response was overwhelmingly supportive and mostly contained messages of love and kindness.
"I'm so happy that it's 2020, and the acceptance is real."
DeGeneres also asked de Jager about something she said in her video, when she explained that she felt, from a young age, like she'd been born in the wrong body.
"To me, I just always was so confused. I was like, 'Why do I have to wear that?' Or, 'Why don't I have long hair?' And I'm really grateful... because my mom is a queen," she said. "I was like, 'Mom, I really want to wear girl clothes. And she was like, 'If you want to wear girl clothes, you're gonna wear them.'"
While de Jager made sure to share her truth on her own terms, DeGeneres asked whether or not she would have ever come out if she hadn't been blackmailed.
"I always wanted to come out with it, but it is such a delicate thing. Like, how do you find the timing? There is never the perfect timing," de Jager said. "So, in a way, while I'm not thankful to the person who did this, I am thankful that it happened now. And now I get to be free."
Reflecting on her experience and the support she's gotten, de Jager admitted that being out and open about her true self is a new feeling, and she's looking forward to hopefully helping and inspiring others.
"It's only been a week, I don't know where this is gonna go. I don't know where I fit in, in this magical world," she shared. "But as long as I get to be myself, and inspire any 'Little Nikkies' to be their selves, that's all I can do."
In a effort to help and inspire, DeGeneres had a special surprise -- a $10,000 donation, in de Jager's name, to The Trevor Project.
Check out then video below for more on de Jager's emotional video and the powerful response from her friends and fans.