Skip to main content
Tags: bruce willis | dementia | diagnosis | tallulah willis

Tallulah Willis Opens Up About Bruce Willis' Dementia

By    |   Thursday, 01 June 2023 01:15 PM EDT

Tallulah Willis is getting candid about her father Bruce Willis' dementia battle, and how it has impacted her over the years.

In a first-person essay for Vogue, Tallulah Willis admitted to her own personal struggles during the early stages of Bruce Willis' diagnosis that kept her from being completely present with her family.

Bruce Willis' family announced last year that the "Die Hard" star was taking a step back from acting after being diagnosed with aphasia, but in February they released a statement saying that his condition had "progressed" and he is now facing frontotemporal dementia (FTD).

"It started out with a kind of vague unresponsiveness, which the family chalked up to Hollywood hearing loss: 'Speak up! "Die Hard" messed with Dad's ears,' " Tallulah Willis, who is also the daughter of Demi Moore, wrote. "Later that unresponsiveness broadened, and I sometimes took it personally."

When it came to being there for her family, Tallulah Willis admitted she was wrestling her own demons.

"I have met Bruce's decline in recent years with a share of avoidance and denial that I'm not proud of," she wrote.

Tallulah Willis revealed that she had struggled with anorexia nervosa and depression so severe that she was admitted into a residential treatment facility, as well as an ADHD diagnosis.

But while she was "wrapped up in my body dysmorphia, flaunting it on Instagram," she said her dad was "quietly struggling."

"I had managed to give my central dad-feeling canal an epidural; the good feelings weren't really there, the bad feelings weren't really there," she recalled. "But I remember a moment when it hit me painfully: I was at a wedding in the summer of 2021 on Martha's Vineyard, and the bride's father made a moving speech. Suddenly I realized that I would never get that moment, my dad speaking about me in adulthood at my wedding. It was devastating."

While she is slowly finding acceptance, Tallulah Willis admitted that she still has "hopes for my father that I'm so reluctant to let go of.

"Recovery is probably lifelong, but I now have the tools to be present in all facets of my life, and especially in my relationship with my dad. I can bring him an energy that's bright and sunny, no matter where I've been," she wrote.

"In the past I was so afraid of being destroyed by sadness, but finally I feel that I can show up and be relied upon," she continued. "I can savor that time, hold my dad's hand, and feel that it's wonderful. I know that trials are looming, that this is the beginning of grief, but that whole thing about loving yourself before you can love somebody else — it's real."

Zoe Papadakis

Zoe Papadakis is a Newsmax writer based in South Africa with two decades of experience specializing in media and entertainment. She has been in the news industry as a reporter, writer and editor for newspapers, magazine and websites.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Tallulah Willis is getting candid about her father Bruce Willis' dementia battle, and how it has impacted her over the years.
bruce willis, dementia, diagnosis, tallulah willis
Thursday, 01 June 2023 01:15 PM
Newsmax Media, Inc.

Sign up for Newsmax’s Daily Newsletter

Receive breaking news and original analysis - sent right to your inbox.

(Optional for Local News)
Privacy: We never share your email address.
Join the Newsmax Community
Read and Post Comments
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.

Interest-Based Advertising | Do not sell or share my personal information

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
Download the NewsmaxTV App
Get the NewsmaxTV App for iOS Get the NewsmaxTV App for Android Scan QR code to get the NewsmaxTV App
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved