LIFESTYLE

She Can Do No Wrong: Ellen DeGeneres' Humor Helped Her Mother Overcome A Bad Divorce At 13

Date March 20, 2018 14:30

Ellen DeGeneres is easily one of the world's most endearing comedians. Her show, which has been running for almost 15 years is a testament to this.

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She makes it look so easy.

Ellen is skilled at making even the most serious and unlikable celebrities seem like they are fun to be around. She is a master at telling feel-good jokes and knows just how to be self-deprecating without going overboard. And, she makes it look so easy.

Think about it: Ellen has had to show up every other day since her show began, to make people laugh regardless of what is going on in their lives or hers. But, she never seems to have a bad joke day.

She always looks like she is having the time of her life.

Difficult childhood

Ellen grew up in New Orleans and had a lot of fun during her much younger years despite growing up in what she has called "a very conservative Christian home". She has said in the past that she loved exploring New Orleans on her bike.

Her parents divorced when she was 13 and she had to move with her mother to Atlanta, Texas. This experience helped the show host become the comedian she is today.

Her mom was depressed and Ellen discovered that she could make her feel better by making light of what she was going through. She says:

I'd make fun of her laughing. And she'd laugh so hard she'd start to cry, and then I'd make fun of that.

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Her facility for finding the joke in terrible situations and making people laugh despite their circumstances was what led to her big break.

Heartbroken and poor, but still funny

She was 20, heartbroken and poor. Her girlfriend had just died in an accident. She was living in a little flea-infested basement apartment in New Orleans trying to make sense of the harsh realities of her life when she realized how funny it would be to dial up God and get him to answer her questions.

She revealed this on Dax Shepard's, podcast, Armchair Expert.

That was the moment she realized that telling people about her experience of loss in this way could make her a successful comedian. And, more than that, it could make her the first female comic on Johnny Carson’s The Tonight Show.

Thankfully, she did more than fantasize about it. Years later, her first performance on Carson helped launch her successful career and she certainly made the God joke.

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Ellen Degeneres