Emma Heming Willis makes surprising confession about when she first shared Bruce Willis’ dementia diagnosis

The model shares two children with the Die Hard star

bruce willis emma heming daughters

Emma Heming Willis, wife of Bruce Willis, recently opened up about her decision to publicly share her husband's diagnosis of frontotemporal dementia (FTD). 

In a heartfelt op-ed for Maria Shriver’s Sunday Paper, published on November 11, Emma reflected on the journey she and her family have embarked upon since the diagnosis.

The Willis family, which includes Emma, Bruce's ex-wife Demi Moore, and their five daughters, had previously released a joint statement in February confirming the 68-year-old actor's deteriorating health. 

They revealed that Bruce's initially diagnosed aphasia had progressed to FTD, significantly impacting his communication skills.

Emma, a 45-year-old model and entrepreneur, described her initial hesitation to disclose Bruce's condition publicly. 

© Getty Images

Emma Heming Willis and Bruce Willis arrive for music legend Tony Bennett's 90th birthday celebration

"I struggled" with the decision, she admitted. However, the act of sharing brought an unexpected sense of relief and connection.

 "Yet after our family shared the news, I felt like I could breathe," she said in the op-ed. This openness allowed her to connect with others in the FTD community, finding support and understanding in a collective experience.

© Getty Images

The pair have been married for 14 years and renewed their vows in 2019

Bruce's diagnosis has profoundly affected Emma's outlook on life. She wrote: “I’ve become more compassionate,” noting her increased empathy for others' struggles and her ability to balance gratitude with grief. 

Her advocacy for the FTD community is driven not only by her desire to support her husband but also to set an example for their children, to face challenges "out loud" and combat the stigma and isolation that accompany such diseases.

© Getty

Bruce Willis and Emma Heming Willis

However, Emma also acknowledged the struggle with guilt, recognizing that her family's access to resources is not universal. "When I’m able to get out for a hike to clear my head, it’s not lost on me that not all care partners can do that," she said, aware of the many untold stories of others facing similar challenges. 

Yet, she finds value in sharing her family's journey, understanding its impact on others who may feel seen and understood through her words.

Ending her op-ed on an optimistic note, Emma shared that her understanding of FTD has grown, and with it, her hope. "I have so much more hope today than I did after Bruce was first diagnosed," she expressed, acknowledging the strength she has garnered through this experience. "As much as I grieve this experience daily—as I know so many others do—I also know that it has made me stronger than I ever thought possible."

Get the lowdown on the biggest, hottest celebrity news, features and profiles coming out of the U.S.  Sign up to our HELLO! Hollywood newsletter and get them delivered straight to your inbox. 

More Health & Fitness

See more