Bruce Jenner has already told the world, but what happened when he told his children about his decision to transition from male to female? That’s what the two-part Keeping Up With the Kardashians special, About Bruce, aimed to show when the first part aired on Sunday, May 17.
The special, which was taped in January 2015, featured Bruce talking with each of the Kardashian women and Scott Disick (Rob Kardashian was not featured) about his transition. It started with a message from Bruce that noted, “Today my family loves, supports, and accepts me as I am — and I’m so grateful.”
The emotional episode then cut to Khloe Kardashian bringing Bruce a stack of size 13M high heels.
“Coming in and doing this interview I do have high anxiety,” Khloe said in her solo interview. “I don’t know if I’m saying the right thing, if I’m using the right terminology. I don’t want to offend anyone. I’m fine with him dressing as a woman. I want Bruce to be happy.”
But Khloe seemed to have the strongest reaction when Bruce confirmed that he would officially be transitioning from male to female sometime in the spring.
“Are you planning on not being Bruce anytime soon? Khloe asked, and when Bruce said yes, she replied, “You have children, you don’t have to answer to us, but you need to tell us! I don’t care that you want to do it, I support you, I have always supported you, but I don’t think it’s fair that you won’t tell us how close this is in the near future. We’re still your kids!”
Kendall then recalled moments from her childhood in which she realized something was different about her dad.
“We would find things like makeup, and we thought he was having an affair at one point, and we didn’t know what to do,” Kendall said, adding that she once saw her dad dressed as a woman and hid from him. “We didn’t want our family to be broken up, so we didn’t tell anybody.”
Bruce struck a nerve when he said the opinions he cared about the most were Kendall and Kylie’s. It especially hurt Khloe, who has considered Bruce her dad since the age of 4.
“Yes, we’re not blood, but I don’t know, it’s still my dad,” she said in her solo interview.
To help run interference, Kim Kardashian stepped in and talked to Bruce. When she asked him whether he was officially transitioning, he paused before answering yes.
“See, hesitating four seconds makes us feel like you’re lying when you already know the answer. You’ve probably already made the appointment,” Kim said.
“Well, yeah,” Bruce responded, noting that he had several surgeries set up to alter his face and adding that he had scheduled the Diane Sawyer interview. This was news to Kim, who was the first of the Kardashians Bruce told about his gender struggles.
“It’s been kind of my job to keep this secret for over a decade,” Kim said in her solo interview.
But after Bruce decided to tell Diane Sawyer, Kim was upgraded from secret keeper to official Kardashian spokesperson. Bruce wanted Kim to represent the family at the interview, but the problem was that no one in the family seemed to know the interview was even happening.
Both Kendall and Kylie were in tears and thoroughly frustrated over their dad’s decision to keep them out of the loop. Kim’s most concerned for her mom’s reaction.
“I committed to this life, and I feel like he just checked out,” a tearful Kris Jenner said. She later explained in her solo interview that there are feelings of betrayal left from their 23-year marriage. “I’m open to people and their differences. That’s what I bring to the table when I’m in a relationship, but the other thing I expect out of a relationship is honesty.”
Bruce later added, “The love and acceptance I’ve gotten from Kris is absolutely overwhelming,” which comes after conflicting reports that Kris was unwilling to release a statement for the Diane Sawyer interview.
But it turned out that Kris wasn’t the one Bruce really had to answer to. Khloe was still furious and rounded up all of the Kardashian-Jenner girls to talk to Bruce and get concrete details out of the former Olympian’s plans.
She slammed him for not calling her when she left the house crying and for lying to all of his daughters.
“I’m not lying, Khloe!” he exclaimed. “I just didn’t tell you. It’s not an easy subject to talk to you about.”
“I really have only gotten mad when I’ve found out things that he hasn’t told me,” Khloe said, recalling the times Bruce cared for her as a kid and walked her down the aisle in her wedding to Lamar Odom.
And in all actuality there was quite a bit that Bruce wasn’t telling them. He’d had a series of cosmetic procedures like a nose job, upper lip lift, and work done on his forehead. This only aggravated Khloe further as she realized that Bruce has been transition for close to a year and didn’t tell any of the girls.
Bruce ended the conversation, by saying, “The greatest thing in my life I’ve ever done is raise my children. It’s my greatest accomplishment. I got everybody out of the nest, everybody’s doing great. I’ve got to deal with myself. The last thing I want to do is hurt anyone of you. Maybe if I’m not honest, it’s because I’m afraid to talk to you about this subject because I know it hurts. I understand that. Am I doing it right, Khloe? You can never do this right. There is no right way to do this.”
Part 2 of About Bruce airs Monday, May 18 at 9 p.m. ET on E!
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