Caitlyn Jenner Recalls a TMZ Low Point

Jenner begged Harvey Levin not to publish.

Over the weekend, Caitlyn Jenner was a guest of the Aspen Institute’s Spotlight Health festival. She participated in a Sunday morning panel discussion moderated by journalist Buzz Bissinger, who wrote the Vanity Fair article that went along with Jenner’s indelible coming-out cover.

Andrew Travers has a good summary of the discussion in The Aspen Times. Here’s how Jenner recalls a certain critical moment in her transition from man to woman:

Jenner said she considered suicide herself a few years ago before she came out as transgender. Hounded by paparazzi over rumors she was transitioning, Jenner had surreptitiously gone to a doctor for an early-morning Adam’s apple shaving one day, she recalled. A security guard, she said, tipped off the tabloids. When TMZ’s Harvey Levin acquired a photo of her leaving the doctor’s office with a bandage on her neck, he called Jenner, who begged the paparazzo not to publish a story.

“I said, ‘Harvey, don’t do it,’” she recalled. “‘Why? Because it ruins my life. It ruins my family’s life. Don’t publish the story.’”

Of course, TMZ would publish it. And Jenner, over that sleepless night in her Malibu home waiting for it to go online, considered shooting herself. That low point, however, proved to be a new beginning, she said.

During the discussion, Bissinger, who is working with Jenner on her memoir, also excoriated The New York Times and Washington Post for picking up on a certain TheWrap item about Jenner.

@hollywoodspin Richard Horgan is co-editor of Fishbowl.