Caitlyn Jenner speaks publicly for the first time to Pulitzer Prize–winning V.F. contributing editor and author of Friday Night Lights, Buzz Bissinger.
Bissinger spent many hours with the former man, Bruce Jenner, over a period of three months, and then many more hours with the new Caitlyn.
Caitlyn Jenner recalls the time Bruce Jenner won the gold medal for the decathlon at the 1976 Olympics. She tells Bissinger, “That was a good day, but the last couple of days were better. . . . This shoot was about my life and who I am as a person. It’s not about the fanfare, it’s not about people cheering in the stadium, it’s not about going down the street and everybody giving you ‘that a boy, Bruce,’ pat on the back, O.K. This is about your life.”
Jenner also tells Bissinger about the panic attack she suffered after undergoing a 10-hour facial-feminization surgery on March 15, 2015, because the procedure was supposed to only take 5 hours. However, Bissinger reveals that Jenner did not undergo a genital change surgery. Caitlyn remembers thinking, “What did I just do? What did I just do to myself?” But Jenner was soon relieved when a counselor for the Los Angeles Gender Center came to speak to her and assured her that such reactions are expected as a result of pain medications.
“If I was lying on my deathbed and I had kept this secret and never ever did anything about it, I would be lying there saying, ‘You just blew your entire life. You never dealt with yourself,’ and I don’t want that to happen,” Jenner told Bissinger.
Jenner confesses to Bissinger that Bruce was “always telling lies.” Caitlyn, she says, “doesn’t have any lies.”
Check out this short video from the Vanity Fair photo shoot of the magazine’s 22-page cover story: