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Vanity Fair released new quotes and video from its interview with Caitlyn Jenner, in which she describes how her life as Bruce was hell.
In the new excerpts, Jenner also talks about people liking Caitlyn more than they like Bruce, the importance she placed on her presentation when she came out as Caitlyn, and reaching out to her transgender fans.
Here are some highlights.
On the relief in finally becoming her authentic self:
“Bruce would wear, you know, sweatshirts with hoods on them so paparazzi can’t get pictures and all that kind of crap, and I didn’t want them to see if my fingernails were polished or, you know, on and on and on. It was just hell. To be able to wake up in the morning, be yourself, get dressed, get ready to go out, and just be like a normal person. That’s a wonderful feeling to go through life. I’ve never been able to do that; it’s always been confusion, it’s always been, you know, I’ve got one side [with] boy clothes, the other side’s women’s clothes. It’s like I cleaned the whole closet out—the boys stuff is gone, O.K.?”
On people liking Caitlyn more than Bruce:
“[My mother and I] had a conversation the other day, we were talking about a lot of things, and, you know, she goes, ‘You know what, I think I can have a better relationship with Caitlyn than I can with Bruce,’ because we’ve always had a little tension in our relationship throughout the years…. Even Mark, who is the producer on [Diane Sawyer’s] piece, says, ‘Well, I had breakfast with Reese Witherspoon this morning and she couldn’t stop talking about you. All she wants to do is meet you.’ She never wanted to meet Bruce, you know, but Caitlyn it is.”
On the importance she placed on her presentation:
“I was always worried—you never wanted to look like a guy in drag, you never wanted to look like a guy in a dress, O.K. If you’re going to do that, come out, you really have to look the part. You have to look very feminine, you have to be able to, what I call my presentation is extremely important because it puts people at ease. And if you can do that, O.K., people are at ease, they’re just comfortable being around you.”
On contacting her transgender fans:
“I’ve gotten a lot [of letters] from trans women, and telling their story and telling how excited they were to see the Diane piece…. I mean, I read every one of them, a lot of them I answer; in fact, the other night I got a letter from a trans woman in New York and she had so many interesting things to say, but at the end she left her telephone number, so I called her…. I think she was very surprised I called. So I called her because for me, I am, I don’t, I’m new to this community.”
“I thought, I need to learn about the people, O.K., and here’s this lady living in New York state, she actually works in an operating room, transitioned 15 years ago, doing very well in her life, but obviously went through hell to get there, and I want to know these stories so I can—I have a platform that’s so large, how can I use that to make this better? And the only way I could do that is to talk to people.”
Watch the video below to hear how Jenner felt alone back in the 1980s but pioneers like Laverne Cox and Janet Mock made it easier for her now. “I hope that with my honesty, I can make it easier for someone else down the line,” she said.
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