Bruce Jenner's Children Speak Out

by Lia Beck

On Friday night, in an interview with Diane Sawyer, Bruce Jenner spoke out for the first time about his gender identity and explained that "for all intents and purposes, I am a woman." The interview was an emotional one, for sure, and also extremely inspirational. Jenner spent the first half of the interview speaking one-on-one with Sawyer about his entire life from his childhood to the confusion he experienced during his time as an Olympian. But in the second half, four of Jenner's children came forward to speak out about the first time their father opened up to them about his transition.

His sons Brody, Brandon, and Burt Jenner, and daughter Cassandra Marino sat down with Sawyer and gave their side of the story. All four were extremely supportive of Jenner and were honest about their views of the situation. The first to speak was Brandon, who said, "There’s a thread throughout his whole life of a life that he was longing to live. When you’re that close with somebody, you see little clues no matter what. I feel like I’m getting an upgraded version of my dad. Of a parent." Sawyer asked whether it's been hard at all. Brandon responded, "Obviously, there's parts of it that aren’t necessarily easy. I’m not doing this perfectly. I’m just doing my best to cope with what’s going on, and when I see my dad as a woman it might be a little bit shocking at first."

When Bruce's other children spoke out, their words carried similar sentiments. Cassandra mentioned responding to her dad speaking out to her and said, "He just interrupted me and he said, 'I’m dad, I’m your dad. I will always be your dad.'" She continued, "Dad said it’s not that I’m trying to dress up like a woman, it’s that I spent my whole life dressing as a man."

As for Burt, he explained that he had feelings about his dad possibly identifying as a woman when he was learning about gender identity in a junior high class, "I just remember one day being in junior high class and having to get up and run out of the room quickly because I was afraid that my dad was going to transition to a woman and I would never see him again."

It was perhaps Brody who summed up all of his siblings thoughts when he said, "All the traits I loved about Bruce, she still has as a woman."

Editor's Note: Per Jenner's stated preference, Bustle will continue referring to Jenner using he/his pronouns for the time being. We will follow his lead and make any changes to this policy as needed in the future.