Famed talk show host Wendy Williams is one of many women like Missy Elliot, Leona Lewis, and Sia opening up about their experiences with Graves’ disease and hyperthyroidism. Graves’ disease is an autoimmune disorder. The immune system attacks the thyroid, causing it to overproduce hormones. These hormones control many different bodily functions, so thyroid disorders can affect everything from your bones to your heartbeat. Graves’ affects women about eight times more than men, and Black people more than other races.
Wendy announced this week that her show will be returning for a 12th season in September, after taking time off in May for treatment (and then COVID). She shared her experience with Graves’ on her show back in 2018, the day after being diagnosed with a relapse. The video is powerful. She touches on topics ranging from motherhood and menopause to illness, career, and the importance of self-care. All of this is shared with a smooth confidence. Listening to her humor and grace, it’s easy to forget just how rare it is for prominent women to talk about aging and health.
While the last two years have been a challenge for Wendy, she has maintained strength and humor with her fans, and a refreshing openness. It is because of Friends in the Fight like her that patients around the world are able to break the silence and share their stories. These stories lead to healing.
Thank you, role models like Wendy, for brightening our world with your honesty!
Ready to tell your story? Join our Friends in the Fight facebook group to share with a community of patients and caregivers who really get it!