Speculation around Bruce Jenner’s recent decision to grow his hair out, wear dresses, and reportedly get breast implants has been just that—speculation—until today, when Jenner publicly announced his transition to becoming a woman during a highly anticipated interview with Diane Sawyer.
In the exclusive two-hour interview, first announced in February, 65-year-old Jenner told Sawyer about the confusion he faced as a young person, and why he's speaking out now.
When asked to describe who he is, Jenner told Sawyer, "Bruce Jenner is, I would say I've always been confused about my gender identity."
But, Jenner said, "For all intents and purposes, I am a woman."
Jenner started transitioning, by taking hormones, in the '80s. He vehemently denied the idea that his announcement and transition are a "publicity stunt" for the Kardashian's reality TV show. He told Sawyer he hopes he can do this to make things better for the trans community, and change the world
"We're going to change the world," said Jenner. "If the show gave me that foothold to do something good, I have no problem with that."
ABC reached out to all three of Bruce's ex-wives. Chrystie Jenner and Linda Thompson gave messages of support; Kris Jenner had no comment.
Jenner told Sawyer he's not handling this perfectly, just "doing my best to cope with what's going on." Telling his children was an emotional experience, especially for Khloe, who Bruce said took it the hardest because she's lost other important men in her life.
Kim was the first one he told, after she walked in on him in a dress and then walked out without saying anything. Eventually, Kim told Bruce that Kanye has helped her come to terms with Bruce's situation. Kanye told her, "I can be married to the most beautiful woman in the world, and I am. I can have the most beautiful daughter in the world, and I have that. But I'm nothing if I can't be true to myself. It don't mean anything."
Now, Jenner says, "Kimberly has been by far the most accepting [of the children] and the easiest to talk to about it." She even wants to help him "rock" his new identity: "You’re representing the family, you got to look REALLY good."
Understandingly, this has been very hard for me. You will hear what I have to say when I'm ready to but...— Kylie Jenner (@KylieJenner) April 25, 2015
..this isn't about me. I'm so proud of you, Dad. You are so brave. My beautiful Hero.— Kylie Jenner (@KylieJenner) April 25, 2015
Jenner also confirmed his docuseries will premiere this summer. On the subject of getting sexual reassignment surgery, Jenner said he hasn't decided anything, but that would be "down the line."
And while some of his children and Sawyer have asked if he would remarry to a woman, Jenner has rejected the question. He said he wants to have a "free soul" and a lot of great friends. "Let's say I'm asexual," he told Sawyer. "For now."
Rumors about Jenner coming out as transgender started when Jenner began to show signs of transitioning after his split from his wife of 22 years, Kris Jenner. In January People Magazine reported that the transition was in fact happening, after Jenner had started to wear his hair long and had surgery to shave down his Adam’s apple. Their report quoted anonymous sources, making it impossible to confirm, but started a cascade of media attention around Jenner: shortly after, In Touch photoshopped Bruce’s face onto a woman’s body for one of their front covers.
In March, it was also reported that Bruce had gotten breast implants—though, again, without any confirmation from Jenner or his family—and just this week, a photo emerged of Jenner purportedly wearing a dress outside his Malibu home. Finally though, after months of speculation, Jenner has broken his silence to confirm rumors and share his story with the public.