Lucky for him, the woman he is seeing is not really concerned with wanting to be wife number three and would be happy just to be in a relationship.
As Diane Sawyer pointed out in her introduction to Friday night’s much-trailed two-hour interview with Bruce Jenner, how you think of him depends entirely on your generation.
To anyone born before the 1970s, he is the Olympic gold-medal-winning champion, heralded ‘the greatest athlete in the world’ after his victory in the decathlon at the 1976 Games in Montreal.
To a younger generation, however, he is the patriarch of the Kardashian brood, the oft-mocked older male in a feisty hen-house, subject to round-the-clock scrutiny thanks to eight seasons of the reality television show, Keeping up with the Kardashians. His older children have now met their Dad as ‘her’, and all six biological and four stepchildren are wholly supportive; ‘Kimberly’ as he calls her – (Kim Kardashian) in particular. He admits he ‘wasn’t fair’ to the three women he married, though he confessed his struggle to them all (to varying degrees) He told his first wife Chrystie - his college sweetheart and the mother of his two eldest sons, Burt and Casey - about his ‘issues’ just a year into their marriage, when he was training for the Olympics.
But how we all think of, and refer to Jenner is about to change dramatically; the 65 year-old, thrice-married (and thrice-divorced) father of six is transgender. ‘Like most women, she thought: “Oh, I can fix this”’, he said.
Friday’s interview was the last he will ever give as Bruce, before transitioning to become a woman, the person he simply calls ‘her’. He’s been confused about his gender identity since he was a child Even growing up in Tarrytown, 30 miles north of New York City, he used to dress in his mother’s and sister’s clothes, always taking care to replace the dresses exactly as he found them. The couple divorced after nine years, but not he said, because of those ‘issues’.
These days, he has two wardrobes in his Malibu home – one for Bruce and one for ‘her’. His ‘conflict’, however, was a factor in the breakdown of his five-year second marriage, to the actress Linda Thompson, the mother of his middle children, Brandon and Brody.His 23-year marriage to Kris Jenner – the mother of his daughters Kendall and Kylie – would probably have survived ‘if she had been really good about it, is she’d been really understanding,’ he said.However, he also admitted that he ‘downplayed’ his troubles to Kris.‘I was probably not as good at saying: “This is deep down in me,”’ he said. He’s not gay Sexual orientation and gender are, Jenner explained – to a seemingly baffled Sawyer – two entirely different and unrelated things.‘If you become a woman, and you still desire women, are you….a lesbian? The ABC network then devised a graphic for anyone similarly confused: ‘Sexual desire is who you go bed with; gender is who you go to bed as’.Sawyer later asked if Jenner – who stated that he’d never had a sexual encounter with a man - sees himself marrying a woman again.