Caitlyn Jenner opened up about the “emotional scars” from her transition and praised Donald Trump as “good for women” and transgender people during an interview with STAT published on Wednesday, June 29.
While the physical changes of her transition were drastic, Jenner, 66, said it’s more about dealing with the emotions. “It’s not as much a physical health issue as it is an emotional issue. Physically, we had it down pretty good as far as transitioning, to do it in a healthy way. It’s mostly the emotional scars that need to be healed that had festered for a long, long time,” she said. “So probably the bigger issue is the mental side because we have tremendous suicide rates, murder rates — it’s off the charts.”
The reality star — formerly known as Bruce Jenner — expressed that although there are great specialists, most doctors haven’t fully figured out how to deal with trans people. “The medical profession in general doesn’t understand it — and I understand that,” she said. “They don’t teach it in college. You’ve got to kind of learn it on your own.”
As someone who had secretly considered transitioning for decades, Jenner is excited about the progress in recent years. “In the last 10 or 20 years, we have come so far on this issue and how to deal with it — the psychiatric side of it. There are so many more doctors now out there that specialize in gender dysphoria.”
The I Am Cait star, who still calls herself a “conservative Republican,” praised Trump for how he’s supported women and the LGBT community. “Everybody looks at the Democrats as being better with these issues. But Trump seems to be very much for women. He seems very much behind the LGBT community because of what happened in North Carolina with the bathroom issue. He backed the LGBT community,” Jenner said of the Republican presidential hopeful telling Jenner she can use whichever bathroom she chooses in Trump Tower.
However, she knows there’s a risk for LGBT rights if a Republican president is elected. “In Trump’s case, there’s a lot more unknowns,” she said. “With Hillary [Clinton], you pretty much know what you’re gonna get with the LGBT community.”
Earlier this week, Jenner’s Sports Illustrated cover was released, in which she poses with her decathlon gold medal from the 1976 Olympics to commemorate the 40th anniversary. “I loved Bruce,” she said. “I still love him today. I like what he did and the way he set an example for hard work and dedication. I’m proud of that part of my life. But this woman was living inside me, all my life, and it reached the point where I had to let her live and put Bruce aside. And I am happier these last 12 months, than I’ve ever been in my life.”