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Demi Moore Shares Update on Ex Bruce Willis’ Health Amid His Battle With Dementia

The actress discusses the advice she has given their three daughters

spinner image Demi Moore shared an update on Bruce Willis' health, and shared what advice she's given their three daughters.
Bruce Willis and Demi Moore at the after party for the Comedy Central Roast of Bruce Willis in 2018.
Phil Faraone/VMN18/Getty Images For Comedy Central

Demi Moore has revealed the latest on ex-husband Bruce Willis’ ongoing health battle. The extended Willis family announced in February 2023 that the Die Hard actor had been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia.

“Given the givens he is doing very well,” Moore said during an appearance on Good Morning America, where she was promoting her new TV show, Feud: Capote vs. The Swans. The Charlie’s Angels actress shares three daughters — Rumer Glenn, 35, Scout LaRue, 32, and Tallulah Belle, 29 — with the retired actor.

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“What I’ll share is what I say to my children, which [is] it’s important to just meet them where they’re at and not hold on to what isn’t, but what is,” Moore said. “Because there’s great beauty and sweetness and loving and joy out of that.”

Moore, 61, and daughters have been a united team with Willis’ wife, Emma Heming Willis, who married the actor in 2009; Heming Willis calls herself his “care partner” along with their two daughters, Mabel Ray, 11, and Evelyn Penn, 9. The 45-year-old wife of the movie star has been dedicated to raising awareness of the disease. She recently wrote a candid guest essay for Maria Shriver’s newsletter, The Sunday Paper, about the hard lessons she has learned.

“I struggle with guilt, knowing that I have resources that others don’t. 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,” she wrote. “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. I want people to know that when I hear from another family affected by FTD, I hear our family’s same story of grief, loss, and immense sadness echoed in theirs.”

Heming Willis noted that it is a critical time for research into frontotemporal dementia, a disease with no cure or treatment. “The first disease-modifying treatments for FTD are in clinical trials right now, actively recruiting participants,” she wrote. “Now is the time for our community to take action to end this disease.”

This isn’t the first time the former model has shared the painful realities of living with a loved one with dementia. During an interview on Today, with Susan Dickinson, CEO of the Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration, Heming Willis bluntly said: “Dementia is hard. It’s hard on the person diagnosed. It’s also hard on the family. And that is no different for Bruce or myself or our girls. When they say this is a family disease, it really is.”

Asked by interviewer Hota Kotb if the actor is aware of his condition, Heming Willis said, “It’s hard to know.” ​​

FTD is the most common form of dementia in people younger than 60. Symptoms include personality changes, apathy, decision-making difficulties, and speaking or language comprehension challenges. 

According to an AARP report, there are 48 million family caregivers in the U.S. More than 11 million Americans serve as unpaid caregivers for people with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia, according to a 2023 Alzheimer’s Association report. 

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Family caregivers provide day-to-day support with care tasks (such as bathing, grooming, dressing, feeding and mobility assistance) for adults with disabling health conditions, and 61 percent of family caregivers work either full- or part-time, according to an AARP report. 

“It’s important for care partners to look after themselves so that they can be the best care partner for the person they’re caring for,” Heming Willis said on Today.

Heming Willis has also been using her Instagram platform to advocate for her husband and raise awareness of brain health issues through interviews with dementia care specialists, speech language pathologists and neurologists for her audience of nearly 920,000 followers. 

Find resources for caregivers on the AARP website.

Editor's note: This article was originally published on Aug. 30, 2023. It has been updated to reflect new information.

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