Emma Heming Willis penned an essay for Maria Shriver‘s Sunday Paper about coming to terms with her husband Bruce Willis‘ frontotemporal dementia diagnosis. The Die Hard actor received the diagnosis earlier this year, after he was first diagnosed with aphasia.
“I have so much more hope today than I did after Bruce was first diagnosed,” Emma wrote. “I understand this disease more now, and I’m now connected to an incredible community of support. I have hope in having found a new purpose — admittedly one I never would have gone looking for — using the spotlight to help and empower others.”
She also acknowledged the privileges she has, which many caregivers in similar situations do not have. “I struggle with guilt, knowing that I have resources that others don’t,” she revealed. “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. When what I share about our family’s journey gets press attention, I know that there are many thousands of untold, unheard stories, each of them deserving of compassion and concern.”
Still, she sees the value in opening up about their story. “At the same time, I see that what I share matters to others who may be struggling, and in a small way makes them feel seen and understood,” Emma added.