Iconic reality star, Bruce Jenner’s highly anticipated interview with Diane Sawyer has been aired in the United States which entails Bruce speaking out for the first time about being transgender.
The interview, broadcast on ABC News, gained an estimated total of 12 million viewers for the entire 2 hour special. This is the first time Bruce Jenner has spoken publicly about his progress transitioning after the news made headlines several months earlier, creating a mass of media coverage and fan interest.
The former Olympic champion was emotional from the beginning, tearing up after being asked ‘Are you ready?’ with Bruce responding, “Diane, Let’s do it. It’s going to be tough. I’ve been thinking about this day forever and what I should do with my life. How do I tell my story? How do I tell people what I’ve been through, and that day is today. I need the tissues — it’s gonna be kinda tough but today’s the day.”
From the beginning Diane Sawyer spoke very openly with Bruce and both seemed open to talk freely about any issues which may arise. Bruce removes his ponytail being a symbolic piece of the interview, Diane adding, “In a sense, we start again,” before asking, “Are you a woman?”
“Yes, for all intents and purposes, I am a woman,”
The pair returned to Bruce’s home town for the first time in nearly 50 years where the star spoke openly about being curious about his gender identity from a young age and how he commonly wore dresses.”I was a very lonely little boy. I’m still a lonely big boy. I don’t socialize a lot,” Jenner tells Sawyer. “I’ve never fit in. When you deal with this issue you don’t fit in.”
“I want to enjoy my life as who I am. It’s that simple.”
Before moving on to past relationships, Diane Sawyer asked if there was any attraction towards men or if the interest stopped at women with Bruce answering, “”I never was attracted to the guys … sexuality was totally different than what my issues were. I’m not gay,” he says. “I am, as far as I know, heterosexual. I’ve never been with a guy.
“Are you a lesbian?”
“You’re going back to the sex thing and it’s apples and oranges,” Jenner says, and clarifies: “There’s two different things here. Sexuality is who you personally are attracted to — who turns you on — male or female. But gender identity has to do with who you are as a person and your soul, and who you identify with inside, okay? I’ve been out dressed as a woman and even had men hit on me.”
Jenner’s first marriage was to Chrystie Crownover who Bruce says was fully supportive and took the news well before stressing that this was not the issue their marriage ended.
Sadly, Bruce’s second marriage with Linda Thompson did end because of difficulties accepting Bruce’s lifestyle. Moving on to the most well-known marriage with Kris Jenner, with their divorced being finalised in December 2014. Many speculated how long Kris knew about Bruce’s transitioning, with Bruce finally announcing that the Kardashian monarch knew all along.
“I loved Kris. I had a wonderful life with her. I learned a lot,” he says. “I thought we had a pretty good sex life, later on as I heard, maybe we didn’t. … But I thought it was pretty good.”
As for Keeping Up With the Kardashians, Jenner says, “The entire run, I kept thinking to myself, ‘Oh my God, this whole thing, the one real, true story in the family was the one I was hiding and nobody knew about it.’ The one thing that could make a difference in people’s lives was right here in my soul and I could not tell that story.”
“I’m saying goodbye to people’s perception of me”
The reality star asked Diane Sawyer to requests that people continue to use “he” and “him” pronouns to describe him for the time being. Despite transitioning for five years, Jenner stopped the process. He continued his motivational speaking, but felt like a fraud. After cameras swarmed Jenner following a recent surgery, Jenner says the thought of ending it all crossed his mind — but quickly passed. “I want to see how this story ends,” he tells Sawyer.
Moving on to speak about his children, the 65-year old became emotional again and says how telling them about his journey was the hardest part due to a fear of hurting them. His four oldest children, otherwise known as ‘The Jenner Clan’ contacted the show and told Diane that their father can talk to them any time, Brandon adding, “it’s like im getting an upgraded version of my father.” His youngest six children, ‘The Kardashians’ had mixed reviews and told Diane during the interview that none of them had seen ‘her’ referring to his female character. After a breakthrough with Kimberly, Bruce happily said that she’s been the easiest to talk to. The ABC news team reached out to his youngest daughters, Kylie and Kendall, who commented, “We love our dad very much,” they said. “He has the biggest heart, and all we want is for him to be happy. If he’s happy, we’re happy.”
“If this is my only problem I have in life, I’ve got it made,” Jenner tells Sawyer. “If it’s only this, I’ll be okay. I’ve got my health, I’ve got my children, I’ve got family, I’ve got seven grandkids now. I’m actually really excited about the future and what I can do.”
Unsure of whether reconstructive surgery will happen, Jenner states, “”I would do it so quietly nobody in the world would ever know,” he says. The cameras and filming everything — “To me, it’s very degrading. … As far as the term SRS, sexual reassignment surgery, it would be down the line.”
Jenner invites Sawyer to dinner so she can meet “her” privately, and takes Sawyer to his closet to show her the dress he planned to wear that night. Wrapping things up, Sawyer shares that Jenner has invited her back to interview him in a year and see where it all ends up.
His touching interview affected millions with #BruceJenner trending worldwide and multiple celebrities reaching out and supporting the star.
Not only was I able to call him my husband for 25 years and father of my children, I am now able to call him my hero.
— Kris Jenner (@KrisJenner) April 25, 2015
Absolutely flawed at how courageous and brave Bruce Jenner is. So inspiring and so powerful. Shame on anyone who dare judge x
— SAM SMITH (@samsmithworld) April 25, 2015
Bruce Jenner is a beautiful, brave human being. Sending him lots of love. He's saving lives and opening minds tonight.
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) April 25, 2015