Though she recently joked on NBC's Saturday Night Live that she is "like, so gay," the 26-year-old actress didn't mean to diminish the love they shared. "I didn't talk about my first relationships that went public because I wanted things that are mine to be mine," she tells The London Sunday Times. "I hated it that details of my life were being turned into a commodity and peddled around the world. But considering I had so many eyes on me, I suddenly realized [my private life] affects a greater number of people than just me. It was an opportunity to surrender a bit of what was mine, to make even one other person feel good about themselves."
For Stewart, dating Pattinson yielded more attention than she ever wanted. "If it didn't seem like a relevant topic, like something that needed help, I would have kept my life private forever. But then I can't walk outside holding somebody's hand, as I'm followed everywhere," she says. "When I was dating Rob, the public was the enemy—and that is no way to live. It wasn't this grand statement, 'I was so confused! Now I've realized who I am!' I have not been struggling."
As for why she decided to come out publicly, she says, "It just seemed important, and topical."
While many fans turned on Stewart after her breakup with Pattinson, she doesn't regret her time spent with the 30-year-old actor—or the film franchise that made them internationally known movie stars. "Every step turns you into the person you are, and yeah, [Twilight] shaped me enormously. Not just those movies, but the subsequent effect," the César Award-winning actress says. "It made my involvement in Sils Maria more interesting, for sure. Ironic and meta."
Referring to Clouds of Sils Maria's in-jokes, she says, "Those lines in someone else's mouth would have been interesting, but not, like, 'Whoa. She really knows what she's talking about!'"
The tabloids have eased up on the actress in recent years, allowing her to focus on her desires. Regarding the future of her film career, Stewart says, "I want to push myself. In my life, when I'm emotional about something, I'm an extreme person. Subtlety is not my go-to. I just don't want to fake anything, but the best opportunities for me are whenever I feel a little bit scared."