Bruce Willis' wife says 'options are slim' with dementia treatment

·4 min read
Bruce Willis' wife says 'options are slim' with dementia treatment

Bruce Willis' wife is opening up about her husband's prognosis.

"When you live the world of dementia you know that options are slim," Emma Heming Willis wrote on Instagram alongside a photo of herself with her friend Max Lugavere. "But some won’t take that lying down which is how change is made, and I got to witness the beauty in that last night."

Emma congratulated Lugavere on his new documentary, "Little Empty Boxes," which follows his mother's battle with dementia. She praised him "for being so brave and vulnerable" with his story "and spotlighting the importance of brain health."

"His love for his mother is powerful. His motivation to find answers from leading health experts is inspiring and then be so gracious to share that information is a true blessing," she wrote.

Bruce Willis and his wife Emma Hemming Willis at the roast of Bruce Willis
Bruce Willis' wife Emma Heming Willis let her Instagram followers know treatment options are "slim" when it comes to dementia.

The documentary, directed by Lugavere and Chris Newhard, highlights Lugavere's journey as he "educates himself on everything he can do to help" his mother. Emma was so moved by the film, she said "it would be an absolute disservice" if it didn't have a huge release.



Her comments section was filled with supporters of Bruce and Emma, including Lugavere himself, who wrote, "You're a warrior, and I'm so proud to be in this fight with you," with a heart emoji.

Bruce's ex-wife Demi Moore commented as well, writing, "look forward to seeing it!"

Other supporters included fans who have also dealt with caring for a loved one with dementia, with one writing, "It is something no one understands till they are living with it or have lived through it. I would always always support all you do."


Willis family
From left: Rumer Willis, Demi Moore, Bruce Willis, Scout Willis, Emma Heming Willis and Tallulah Willis attend Moore's "Inside Out" book party in 2019.

Emma has previously spoken about her struggles to cope with her husband's diagnosis, saying that caring for someone with dementia can feel isolating, and that it took effort for her to open up about it because "it was also very difficult to talk about."

"If you could take a look into my messages and my direct messages, honest to God, you would think the whole world has dementia," she shared on Instagram in March. "So many people now are coming to me and telling me, and I even have friends now, ‘You know, my grandmother, or my so-and-so had it,’ and I'm like, 'Why didn't I know?' We're not talking about it."

Bruce Willis and Emma Heming Willis at the premiere of Glass in New York
Willis was diagnosed with dementia a year after his family went public with his aphasia diagnosis.

Bruce was originally diagnosed with aphasia, a neurological disorder that affects an individual's ability to comprehend or express speech, in March 2022.

His family later announced in February of this year that the aphasia was only a symptom of his larger diagnosis of frontotemporal dementia.


"Since we announced Bruce’s diagnosis of aphasia in spring 2022, Bruce’s condition has progressed and we now have a more specific diagnosis: frontotemporal dementia (known as FTD)," the announcement, signed by Emma, Moore and their children said. "Unfortunately, challenges with communication are just one symptom of the disease Bruce faces. While this is painful, it is a relief to finally have a clear diagnosis."


Bruce Willis, Emma Willis, Demi Moore and their children posing for a picture while celebrating his birthday
Willis celebrated his birthday with his wife Emma, his ex-wife Moore and his five daughters.

Since making the announcement, Emma has been very open about how his diagnosis has changed the way she and her family celebrate their milestones.

In the last few months, they celebrated the "Die Hard" actor's 68th birthday as a big, blended family, as well as Emma and Bruce's 14th wedding anniversary.

Bruce Willis and Emma Willis at the CocoBaba and Ushopal activity
Emma Hemming Willis previously shared on her Instagram how Bruce Willis' diagnosis made it harder to celebrate "special occasions" like birthdays and anniversaries.

One of the things that has helped Emma get through some of the more difficult days is the support of those close to her.

In another Instagram post, she advised her followers to keep those in their lives who are serving as caregivers close and not to "ask what you can do" and "just do."

"It got me thinking about how hard these types of 'special occasions' can be on caregivers," Emma revealed. "When usually our person would acknowledge the event, now their changing brains just can’t. And that is what it is."