Caitlyn Jenner, formerly known as Bruce Jenner, has finally introduced herself to the world. The first images of Jenner were taken by famed photographer Annie Leibowitz in Jenner’s Malibu home for the cover of Vanity Fair, and they’re nothing short of amazing. Social media has rallied behind Jenner’s brave actions, with the hashtag #CallMeCaitlyn gaining popularity within minutes of her debut. The Jenner and Kardashian families weighed in immediately, as expected. Dozens of other celebrities have greeted Jenner with praise, many taking to their Twitter accounts with words of support. Jenner herself joined in on the media frenzy with her new Twitter account – and to no one’s surprise she broke a Guinness World Record by reaching 1 million followers in 4 hours and 3 minutes. If a picture is worth a thousand words, this one was worth a million.
It’s not just celebrities that have hailed the cover, GLAAD President and CEO Sara Kate Ellis said of Jenner: “By sharing her journey with the world, Caitlyn Jenner is accelerating acceptance of transgender people everywhere and reminds us all how important it is to live as your most authentic self”. Jenner is off to a big start, and it’s only been hours since her introduction. Shortly after her cover photo debut, ABC announced she will be honored with the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the 2015 ESPY’s. Less than a week later her E! reality series is scheduled to premiere.
Jenner is well aware of the skepticism with her media coverage throughout and after the transition; she did spend over 20 years as the Kardashian patriarch after all. But she’s the first one to point out how ridiculous it is to think she made such a life altering decision, one that obviously did not come lightly, as a publicity stunt. Inside the Vanity Fair pages, she discusses in detail the process of her transition and a wide variety of discussions that come with it – her facial feminization surgery, pronoun confusion, fatherhood, and preparing for the inevitable criticism, to name a few.
Whatever your thoughts on the Jenner/Kardashian clan may be, there is no denying the bravery of Jenner and the attention it has brought to a heavily misunderstood topic. For all the details on Caitlyn Jenner in her own words, you’ll have to wait until June 9th to pick up a copy of Vanity Fair. A Google search or some scrolls through Twitter should bring up enough information to keep you occupied in the mean time though.
It was a big first day for Jenner, and it’s not even over yet. If her impact in the first few hours of debuting are a precursor of the months to come, there’s going to be a lot more talk about her story. I’ll be one of her millions of followers sticking around for it.