The This Morning host posted a message to his Instagram account before appearing on the sofa next to co-host Holly Willoughby to talk about his announcement.
Phillip's statement, also posted to the This Morning Twitter feed, said he has spent the last few years coming to terms with the fact that he is gay.
A statement from Phillip pic.twitter.com/iIE7NcLZ2I
— This Morning (@thismorning) February 7, 2020
Speaking to Holly afterwards, Phil said he felt he had to come out as they interviewed so many brave people on their morning show, it was time for him to be the same.
He added that his wife and daughters have been incredibly supportive.
Fans of the star have quickly praised his strength in making this news public.
Wow @Schofe , you are amazing ❤️
— heather brown (@mrshmb) February 7, 2020
@Schofe ur an inspiration xxxxxx
— Laura Lee (@LauraLee1985) February 7, 2020
— sian crooks (@sian_080) February 7, 2020
That takes courage @Schofe well done mate. A fine example. Take care and be strong.
— M4dErnie (@ErnieM4d) February 7, 2020
@Schofe LEGEND!! You know the LGBT community will embrace you and be here to support you and your family.
— JediandyMIXER (@JediandyMixer) February 7, 2020
@Schofe Very brave statement, Well done you 👍🏻👏
— Ian McIntyre (@IanMacMedia) February 7, 2020
@Schofe 😢 such a brave thing to do 💙 love you lots xxx
— 🌼Tracy Shaw 🌼 (@TraceJShaw) February 7, 2020
We love you even more now @Schofe we always will x
— a girl with curls (@JaneyPid) February 7, 2020
I never watch this morning (like other folk I work weekdays) bloody hell, bawling my eyes out at ol' @Schofe coming out. No surprise if I'm honest. I hope he finds the peace to be himself. Go taste the rainbow 🌈 lad.
— Alison Marrs 🌹 (@SrramJane) February 7, 2020
@Schofe that was incredibly emotional and brave. Good for you. Live your best life your family and friends will always love you no matter what.
— bethan durham (@bethandurham) February 7, 2020
During his chat with Holly, that opened the show today, instead of usual Friday hosts Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford, Phil told how supportive everyone in his life has been.
He said: "It's funny, because everyone I've spoken to, you, have all been so supportive, loving and caring, and my entire family, to a person, have grabbed us and said, 'It's OK, it's OK. We love you, we're proud of you.'
"Every person I tell it gets a little lighter and a little lighter.
Wow, crying at Phillip Schofield, what a brave man.
"I'm really very aware that Steph and the girls are at home watching this, and we're all together.
"We spent a lot of time together and they've been supporting us as we got to this moment.
"I feel a little lighter but I'm very aware there is no question it causes pain and upset.
"We've never had any secrets."
Asked how Steph is coping, he said: "It's tough. We've gone through this together. I have to deal with this for quite some time.
"I can't write in any statement what I feel.
"She is amazing, she is incredible. There is no one in my life who would have supported me in the way she has supported me."
Holly said some viewers may be questioning why he has decided to come out now.
Phil - who has two daughters - replied: "You know, this has been bothering me for a very long time.
"There's no question that it has in recent times, consumed my head. And has become an issue in my head. So I got to the stage where I thought, 'We sit here every day and some amazingly brave person is over here and I'm thinking 'You're so brave, you're so brave.'
"And I'm thinking, 'I have to be that person, I have to be that person. All you can be is honest with yourself.
"I was getting to the point where I didn't like myself. So when is the right time?
"We always say to talk to someone and believe me, I have and it has helped a lot. It's brought me back. Talking to people does bring you back and in some cases talking to people saves you. And you have to discuss it, with my friends, with my family, with my wife.
"You have to talk it through. It's absolutely my decision. It was something I knew I had to do.
"I don't know what the world will be like now, I don't know how this will be taken and what people will think.
"I'm very conscious about the hurt.
"My overriding emotion is guilt. But I will sit here and say I am proud of myself today."
Phil then broke down in tears while talking about his daughters.
He added: "I wasn't easy [telling my daughters]. But they are so amazing in their love and support. They jumped up and gave me a hug, a big hug, a long hug. They hugged Steph and said, 'It's OK, this is fine.'
"We will always be a family. We'll always be that.
"My mum has been on the phone all morning, 'Hope you're OK.' I told her and she said, 'OK, I don't care.' And that's the same with everyone."
Read more: Phillip Schofield is spat on by angry alpaca
Asked about a potential new relationship, he said: "I don't think so, I'm not thinking there. I'm doing each day at a time now. This has always been a slow process. There is no fast process after this. This was the day I knew everything was pointed towards.
"I couldn't have done it if it hadn't been you."
Holly said she will be sat by his side "whatever happens" in the future, and the crew then gave him a round of applause, and he was embraced by Ruth Langsford.
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