Wendy Williams Breaks Her Silence Amid Ongoing Health Struggles, Says She Needs ‘Personal Space’

One day after the former talk show host's aphasia and frontotemporal dementia diagnosis became public, she released a statement regarding her health struggles.

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Wendy Williams Breaks Her Silence Amid Ongoing Health Struggles
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Image Credit: Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for Vulture Festival

Wendy Williams, 59, has finally broken her silence amid ongoing public discussion of her health struggles. One day after her aphasia and frontotemporal dementia diagnosis was revealed, The Wendy Williams Show alum released a statement to PEOPLE about her recent illnesses. “I want to say I have immense gratitude for the love and kind words I have received after sharing my diagnosis of Aphasia and Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD),” she said to the mag.

The TV personality then went on to express her gratitude to her fans and supporters. “Let me say, wow! Your response has been overwhelming,” Wendy continued in the statement. “The messages shared with me have touched me, reminding me of the power of unity and the need for compassion.” She even revealed that she opened up about her diagnosis in hopes of helping others. “I hope that others with FTD may benefit from my story,” the 59-year-old added. “I want to also thank the Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration for their kind words of support and their extraordinary efforts to raise awareness of FTD.”

One day ahead of the premiere of her Lifetime documentary, Where is Wendy Williams?, Wendy asked for “space” from others. “I continue to need personal space and peace to thrive,” she said in the note. “Please just know that your positivity and encouragement are deeply appreciated.” The Love Triangle alum has struggled with various health matters over the years including Graves’ disease, lymphedema, alcohol abuse and more.

Ahead of the tell-all documentary, Wendy’s team released a statement about her FTD diagnosis on February 22. “In 2023, after undergoing a battery of medical tests, Wendy was officially diagnosed with primary progressive aphasia and frontotemporal dementia (FTD),” the statement read. “Aphasia, a condition affecting language and communication abilities, and frontotemporal dementia, a progressive disorder impacting behavior and cognitive functions, have already presented significant hurdles in Wendy’s life.”

Her team concluded the statement by reassuring her fans that Wendy remains positive. “Wendy is still able to do many things for herself. Most importantly she maintains her trademark sense of humor and is receiving the care she requires to make sure she is protected and that her needs are addressed,” they penned. “She is appreciative of the many kind thoughts and good wishes being sent her way.”

The Wendy Williams Show was cancelled in early 2022 following Wendy’s many absences from the talk show in 2021. She has since entered a wellness facility to seek care for her illnesses. Her family, including her niece, Alex Finnie, have publicly spoken about Wendy’s health in light of the documentary. Wendy’s family has claimed that they have limited access to her as she undergoes treatment. The two-part documentary lists Wendy as an executive producer and will premiere on February 24.