Brandon Jenner Says He Only Saw Caitlyn Jenner "Half a Dozen Times" in 17 Years

In a new book, Brandon Jenner reflects on his “challenging” relationship with Caitlyn Jenner. See what he has to say about the Olympic athlete.

By Mike Vulpo Apr 15, 2020 7:08 PMTags
Caitlyn Jenner, Brandon JennerEarl Gibson III/Getty Images

Brandon Jenner is shedding some light into his relationship with Caitlyn Jenner.

In the new book titled To Me, He Was Just Dad: Stories of Growing Up with Famous Fathers, the musician writes a candid chapter about his father who won Olympic gold medals and later became a reality star.

But behind all the trophies and Hollywood lights was a father figure who had a "complicated" relationship with his son.

"My father spent the first 65 years of her life trying to avoid answering the question, ‘How are you doing?' and because of that, she didn't ask it often, either. And though I understand that she avoided the question because the answer would have laid bare too many struggles, it made my relationship with her challenging," Brandon wrote in the new book available now. "People connect with each other through vulnerability, and you can only get someone to open up to you if you are willing to be vulnerable yourself. Because she was shielding something so important from herself, Dad remained distant for much of my life."

When Brandon was four years old, his father moved out and broke things off with Linda Thompson.

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They got divorced because "my dad had decided to start transitioning to female (at least that was what they had discussed). I, of course, was too young then to have any idea what was behind their decision."

Artisan Books

For the first few years after their split, Brandon writes that things were "amicable" between Linda and his father. Things changed, however, when Caitlyn made a life decision. 

"A few years after my parents divorced, Dad apparently decided that it wasn't the right time to transition and had many of his surgeries reversed. After that, his relationship with my mother grew more hostile," he explained. "She had worked hard to accept that the reason my dad couldn't be with her was because he was working towards transitioning."

The strained relationship resulted in Brandon seeing his father "half a dozen times between ages eight and 25."

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When Brandon was in his 20s and Kendall Jenner and Kylie Jenner were teenagers, "my dad and I began to reestablish a relationship." 

"Once Dad decided to go through with the transition, I was the first of her children she confided in…As soon as Dad said it herself, I was so happy for her. It was as if she were truly stepping into who she was," Brandon wrote. "As her son, I wish my dad had been able to transition sooner, not only because I think she would have been much happier, but because I think we could have built a stronger relationship earlier. Now I'm making up for lost time. I speak to my dad almost every day, and every time, she asks me, ‘How are you doing?'"

To Me, He Was Just Dad: Stories of Growing Up with Famous Fathers features 40 first-person narratives. The book allows readers to get a new perspective on famous figures like Samuel L. Jackson, Jeff Bridges and Christopher Reeves.  The book is available now.