Meet Lio Tipton.
You may know Lio from their time on America’s Next Top Model, in which they competed in Cycle 11 under the name Analeigh, or from their movie and TV career. But it turns out even their biggest fans didn’t know everything about the model.
Photos: Elliot Page Looks SO HAPPY In First Shirtless Pic Since Top Surgery!
This first week of Pride Month, Tipton has come out as non-binary with a proud announcement on Instagram, writing:
“Hi. My name is Lio. My pronouns are they/them. I am proud to announce I am queer and I identify as non binary. I hope to give as much love and support back to those who continue to show love and support for the Pride community at large.”
One confused fan asked for clarification from anyone in the comments, saying:
“Can anyone explain to me what does it mean?”
And Lio themselves surprised the commenter by responding:
“It means that I do not identify with the tradition binary gender structure. I do not and have not for a long time, felt whole fitting into one box. It allows me to understand myself outside of how people expect me to.”
They then took a moment to clarify their sexual orientation, which is pansexual — and separate from their gender:
“I’ve made the choice to transition to non binary. I am pansexual which is separate from ones gender identity. Seems I’m not a box person – too claustrophobic. It means something unique to everyone, and that’s the beautiful thing about it. I hope this helps some.”
It’s certainly an inspirational way of putting it. We’re guessing another high profile celeb living their truth will help someone who feels the same way.
They may have actually been teasing this announcement with their previous post a couple weeks ago, in which they act against themselves in an awkward scene captioned:
“I know myself now more than ever.”
Despite not even making the final two, Tipton was one of ANTM‘s biggest success stories, going on to make an impressive career in film. They co-starred with Miles Teller in the rom com Two Night Stand and in the TV series Why Women Kill. Their next project is a sci-fi horror series called The Edge Of Sleep.
But even after a decade, they are probably best known for the role of lovelorn babysitter Jessica in Crazy Stupid Love.
Wishing Lio all the best in their future career AND life! Such an exciting future ahead outside of the box!
[Image via Warner Bros/Netflix/The CW/YouTube.]