Bruce Willis’ wife is asking paparazzi to give the actor “space” following his dementia diagnosis.
Emma Heming Willis took to Instagram Saturday to plead with photographers after the “Die Hard” actor was hounded on a recent outing.
“If you are someone who is looking after someone with dementia, you know how difficult and stressful it can be to get someone out into the world and to navigate them safely, even just to get a cup of coffee,” she said in a video clip.
“It’s clear that there’s still a lot of education that needs to be put worth. So this one is going out to the photographers and video people that are trying to get those exclusives of my husband out and about. Just keep your space.”
Emma was referencing the “Pulp Fiction” star’s recent coffee run in Santa Monica, Calif. During Bruce’s rare public outing with two friends last week, paparazzi attempted to get his attention by yelling at him.
“I know this is your job, but maybe just keep your space. Please don’t be yelling at my husband, asking how he’s doing, whatever,” Emma continued.
“The woo-hooing and the yippee-ki-yay’s — just don’t do it. Give him the space. Allow for our family or whoever’s with him that day to be able to get him from Point A to Point B safely. That’s my PSA.”
Emma’s plea comes just a few weeks after the family revealed in a joint statement that Bruce had been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia (FTD).
“While this is painful, it is a relief to finally have a clear diagnosis,” Emma, along with Bruce’s ex-wife, Demi Moore, and five daughters said in a statement on the Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration website.
“FTD is a cruel disease that many of us have never heard of and can strike anyone. For people under 60, FTD is the most common form of dementia, and because getting the diagnosis can take years, FTD is likely much more prevalent than we know.”
Bruce’s family explained that there is no cure for FTD, which often sees patients suffer personality changes, speech difficulty and motor impairment.
“Bruce has always found joy in life — and has helped everyone he knows to do the same. It has meant the world to see that sense of care echoed back to him and to all of us,” the statement went on.
“We have been so moved by the love you have all shared for our dear husband, father, and friend during this difficult time. Your continued compassion, understanding, and respect will enable us to help Bruce live as full a life as possible.”
Bruce’s family first announced he would be stepping away from acting last March after being diagnosed with aphasia — a condition that can affect a person’s ability to speak, write and understand verbal and written language
Emma said she was grappling with “paralyzing” grief months after the diagnosis, writing, “I’m learning how to live along side [sic] it,” in a heartbreaking post last August.
The couple tied the knot in 2009 and share two daughters: Mabel, 10, and Evelyn, 8.
The “Sixth Sense” star also has three daughters — Rumer, 34, Scout, 31, and Tallulah, 29 — with Moore, whom he was married to from 1987 to 2000.
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