Jill Biden's Drastic Transformation Is Really Causing A Stir

Jill Biden, the wife of President-elect Joe Biden, has spent a large portion of her life as a politician's wife. Serving as both the first lady of Delaware and the second lady of the United States, it seems safe to assume that she will be able to handle her presumed new role as First Lady of the United States with ease. 

That doesn't mean her life has always been this way, however. In fact, Jill grew up quite modestly in the suburbs of Philadelphia, per the BBC, and even got married for the first time at just age 18. She also went on to weather incredible highs and devastating lows with her second husband, Joe Biden, all while establishing an impressive career as an educator.

So, what has it been like going from the suburbs to the Senate to the White House? Has Jill been able to take it all in stride? Keep reading after the jump to find out!

Jill Biden had a wild streak growing up

Jill Biden may be the epitome of a refined, well-mannered politician's wife, but she hasn't always been that way. In fact, she even described herself as having a rebellious streak in her younger years. 

During an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer, Biden fessed up to sneaking into a popular swim club late at night so as to skip out on the pricey membership fees. She and a close friend opted to scale the fence late at night during the summer and have the pool all to themselves. "I can't even believe that I did it," Biden admitted. It was "a long, long time" before she ever told her mother about doing that, she added. She also engaged in other harmless indiscretions, like pulling pranks and sneaking out of school to dine on sandwiches at a local hoagie shop. 

As the eldest of five daughters, Biden took on a different role as the fearless protector of her brood. After she had enough of watching her younger sister being bullied, she simply walked up to the perpetrator's door, rang the doorbell, and punched him square in the face. While she may have been in trouble temporarily, she did manage to win her father's praise for that one. 

Jill Biden dabbled in modeling

Though Jill Biden may be best known for her long standing career as a well-respected educator, make no mistake — she is well versed in other industries as well. From a very young age, Biden had a strong work ethic and worked various jobs in order to make her own money. According to The New York Times, Biden landed her first job ever at the ripe age of 15 years old. "I wanted my own money, my own identity, my own career," she said, according to The Times

During an interview with New Jersey Monthly, Biden explained that one of her first jobs involved serving at a seafood restaurant in Ocean City, N.J. "I loved it," the then-second lady reminisced. 

That's not all, however. Biden also dabbled in modeling. Biden told Vogue in 2008 that in an effort to earn extra money, she took on small modeling gigs for a local agency in Wilmington, D.E. Biden was quick to explain that while she did a few jobs here and there, she certainly didn't consider herself a model. "I might've done five jobs where you get paid, like, 20 bucks," she said. "But I wasn't a model," she carefully added.

Jill Biden was a young divorcee

It's obvious to everyone that Jill and Joe Biden are soulmates, so it may come as a surprise that Mrs. Biden was actually married to someone else prior to meeting Joe. 

As it turns out, Biden was only 18 years old and a freshman at the University of Delaware when she wed football player and fellow college student Bill Stevenson. The marriage, however, only lasted five short years before the two went their separate ways. Unfortunately the divorce wasn't amicable and Stevenson went on to accuse Biden of having an affair with Joe, per the Daily Mail. The Bidens, however, have denied these claims, insisting that they did not meet until after her divorce was finalized in 1975. 

And while Biden was lucky enough to find love again with Joe, she was adamant that the divorce did a number on her. In her 2019 memoir, Where the Light Enters: Building a Family, Discovering Myself, when writing about her divorce, Biden penned, "I let go of fairy-tale endings."

JIll Biden met Joe Biden on a blind date

Jill Biden, it seems, got that fairy tale ending after all, and it started with a blind date. 

Three years after Joe Biden tragically lost his first wife and one-year-old daughter in a horrific automobile crash, his brother introduced her to Jill. Jill wasn't immediately sure that they were a good match. "I was a senior [in college], and I had been dating guys in jeans and clogs and T-shirts, he came to the door and he had a sport coat and loafers, and I thought, 'God, this is never going to work, not in a million years," Jill recalled during an interview with Vogue

On top of their different taste in wardrobe, Joe was a whopping nine years older than Biden. Even with the odds seemingly stacked against them, their chemistry was undeniable. "We went out to see A Man and a Woman at the movie theater in Philadelphia, and we really hit it off. When we came home . . . he shook my hand good night," she revealed. "I went upstairs and called my mother at 1:00 a.m. and said, 'Mom, I finally met a gentleman.'" Yes, a fairytale indeed.

Jill Biden quickly took to her role as stepmom

Immediately after marrying Joe Biden in 1977 (via Biography), Jill Biden quickly got to work diving headfirst into her new role as stepmother — though she doesn't think of herself as a "step" anything. During an interview with Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Biden was careful to explain that while she never asked Hunter and Beau to call her "mom," it just happened organically and at their will. "The kids are the ones that first said it. They wanted our family to be a whole, complete family. They initiated that. In any interview, if the interviewer said step-mom, they'd pipe up and say, 'We don't say that.' That's how the kids wanted to define it," Biden explained. 

Joe also touched on their blended family in his own memoir, Promises to Keep: On Life and Politics (via The Washington Post). He echoed his wife's same sentiments, stating that the transition happened gradually. One day he simply noticed his boys referring to Jill as "Mom" while reserving "Mommy" for their late mother, Neilia. "I'm sort of used to being in charge, but in truth it was Jill and the boys who shaped the contours of our remade family," he recalled.

Jill Biden is first and foremost an educator

Jill Biden may be famous for being the wife of politician Joe Biden, but don't get it twisted. Her passion lies in being an educator. In a tweet, Biden famously declared, "Teaching is not what I do. It's who I am," and her lifelong career as an educator proves just that. 

If you thought that a life-changing event like her husband becoming President of the United States is going to deter her, think again. During an interview with CBS News, when asked if she planned to keep teaching should her husband win the 2020 election, she replied, "I'm gonna continue to teach. It's important, and I want people to value teachers and know their contributions, and lift up the profession." And with a bachelor's degree, two master's degrees, and a doctorate degree, why wouldn't she? That's Dr. Mrs. First Lady to you!

Her resume is also quite impressive. According to Forbes, Biden worked in the public education school system for 13 years, as an English teacher and a reading specialist. After that, she transitioned to Delaware Technical and Community College, and, while Joe Biden served as Vice President, Northern Virginia Community College. Impressive, indeed!

Jill Biden is an accomplished author

In addition to being an accomplished education, Jill also tacked "accomplished author" to her resume, having written several children's books and her memoir, Where the Light Enters: Building a Family, Discovering Myself.

During an interview with People, Biden described her memoir as "the story of how we built and rebuilt our family," which also touched on how she and Joe Biden dealt with the tragic loss of their son Beau (pictured above with his parents). "Sometimes I feel like I've forgotten how to be the mom after the death of my son," she wrote candidly (via The Washington Post). "I worry about my children worrying about me, feeling like they need to be the strong ones. It's not the right order of things. How can I be there for my children when I feel so lost?"

When describing her grief in the book she also wrote, "I feel like a piece of china that's been glued back together again," (via People). "The cracks may be imperceptible — but they're there." Like seemingly everything else in her life, Dr. Jill Biden has handled grief with grace.