The View’s Sunny Hostin says Wendy Williams’ family is desperate to ‘get closer’ to the TV host amid her battle with dementia – as she admits it was ‘painful’ to watch her friend in ‘throes of her addiction’ during Lifetime doc

The View‘s Sunny Hostin has admitted that she found it ‘painful to watch the Where Is Wendy Williams? documentary because it was hard to witness her pal and former colleague amidst the ‘throes of addiction’.

Sunny, 55, appeared forlorn during Tuesday’s episode as she confirmed that she watched the two-part documentary – which shows Wendy, 59, admitting to downing an entire bottle of vodka – with the TV star’s niece, Alex Finnie, because she ‘wanted to understand what happened’ to her friend.

The mother-of-two defended Wendy’s relatives and stressed that the TV host was the one who signed a deal to make three documentaries ‘before she was incapacitated’, and also questioned the legal guardianship that she is currently under.

Sunny praised mother-of-one Wendy for ‘still standing’ despite various personal heartbreaks and also confirmed that the TV host’s family ‘want to get closer to her’ but still have no idea which facility she is in.

Sunny Hostin found it 'painful to watch the Where Is Wendy Williams? documentary because it was hard to witness her pal in the 'throes of addiction'


Sunny Hostin found it ‘painful to watch the Where Is Wendy Williams? documentary because it was hard to witness her pal in the ‘throes of addiction’

The two-part Lifetime documentary shows 59-year-old Wendy upset and admitting that she downed an entire bottle of vodka

The two-part Lifetime documentary shows 59-year-old Wendy upset and admitting that she downed an entire bottle of vodka

Comedian Joy Behar agreed that it 'was not easy to watch' to watch Wendy suffering in front of the cameras


Comedian Joy Behar agreed that it ‘was not easy to watch’ to watch Wendy suffering in front of the cameras

Sunny pictured embracing her friend and former colleague Wendy when she appeared on her TV show back in 2018

Sunny pictured embracing her friend and former colleague Wendy when she appeared on her TV show back in 2018

Explaining that she used to work with Wendy as a ‘legal eagle’ on her radio show, Sunny told the panel: ‘I had the pleasure of getting to know her, both professionally and personally, so it was painful to watch.

‘As most of you know, I went to see it and watch it with her niece because I wanted to understand what happened to my friend.

‘What people should know is she signed this deal to do these three documentaries when she… before she was incapacitated. So this is something she wanted to do.

‘She wanted her family to be involved in it and it was supposed to be a show about her comeback, but she was in the throes of addiction and I think we also need to remember that the pandemic happened, that her husband had an affair and had a baby with another woman and they got divorced.’

Sunny continued: ‘We also have to remember that she lost her mother, who was her best friend, so we’re seeing a confluence that I think would take anyone out, but she’s still standing,’ as the live studio audience applauded her.

‘But she is in this guardianship. Her family clearly loves her. They’re saying that she’s calling them, they’re unable to call her, but she’s calling them,’ she confirmed, before going on to discuss guardianships and her thoughts on dementia.

When her co-host Joy Behar asked where Wendy is, Sunny replied: ‘They don’t know because of the guardianship system and that’s to my next point…

‘I think when someone is going through dementia, being around family members actually can be quite helpful [because] it brings back memories,’ before stating that Wendy’s family ‘want to get closer to her’.

‘If you watch the documentary please take note of the woman Diane Diamond, she’s an expert in guardianship, and she says 90 percent of people in guardianships do not get out of them.

Sunny defended Wendy's family but confirmed that they're still 'unable to call her'

Sunny defended Wendy’s family but confirmed that they’re still ‘unable to call her’

Sunny explained that Wendy had signed the deal to make documentaries 'before she was incapacitated' and that it was 'something she wanted to do'

Sunny explained that Wendy had signed the deal to make documentaries ‘before she was incapacitated’ and that it was ‘something she wanted to do’

Alyssa Farah Griffin found the documentary 'triggering' to watch because of her sister, who is a former addict

Alyssa Farah Griffin found the documentary ‘triggering’ to watch because of her sister, who is a former addict

According to Whoopi, TV host Wendy thought that her documentary was 'going to go in a different direction'

According to Whoopi, TV host Wendy thought that her documentary was ‘going to go in a different direction’

‘And so that’s a system that may be broken and it’s a system that maybe we need to look at a little bit more. I just wish all the best and for her and I hope I get to see my friend again,’ Sunny added of Wendy, who has been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia and speech-affecting aphasia.

Whoopi Goldberg led the discussion as the panel debated whether or not the documentary should have been made in the first place, with the Sister Act star reminding her co-hosts that Wendy’s family ‘made the decision together to show this process’, because Wendy ‘thought it was going to go in a different direction’.

As the women discussed how the documentary might have helped families who ‘may be going through this kind of crisis’, Alyssa Farah Griffin was keen to share her thoughts but was careful not to criticize Wendy’s relatives, whilst opening up about her own sibling.

Alyssa, 34, admitted that the documentary left her feeling ‘really conflicted’ and she decided to ‘turn off’ the second episode because it made her think of her sibling’s heartbreaking battle with addiction.

‘So, I was really conflicted. I want to start by saying that we met her family, I have no doubt they have the best of intentions in this, they love her and you see that and you feel that in meeting them.

‘But I’ve talked about my sister, [she] was an addict for over a decade. She’s now 11 years clean, but when you’re in the throes of addiction, you are not yourself. I remember looking her in her eyes and that was not my sister in those moments.

‘There are years of her life she doesn’t remember, there are major family events she doesn’t remember, and I have a hard time believing that… just for me personally, I would never want her darkest, lowest points to be seen by anyone outside of the closest circle of people who love her.

‘And it was triggering to watch, to be honest. I turned off the final episode because it brought back some painful memories,’ Alyssa added, as Joy, 81 agreed and said: ‘It was not easy to watch, I’ll tell you that. A friend of mine who is a drug counselor used to say, “addictions trump relationships”, and it’s true because you want that, whatever it is.’

Joy, Sunny and Alyssa all agreed that the two-part documentary wasn't easy to watch at times
Joy, Sunny and Alyssa all agreed that the two-part documentary wasn’t easy to watch at times

Mother-of-one Wendy has been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia and aphasia

Mother-of-one Wendy has been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia and aphasia

Lifetime release teaser clip for new Wendy Williams documentary

Alyssa then said that ‘guardianships feels so extreme’, before suggesting that ‘maybe it is not our business [to see] what Wendy is going through’  and questioned why she was even watching the documentary in the first place.

Joy added: ‘One of the producers said, “If we had known she had dementia, no one would have rolled a camera”… well when I was watching episode one, you could see something was wrong, she was very rude to people that she normally would not be rude to…’

As she started listing Wendy’s various ailments, including lymphedema and Grave’s Disease, Whoopi appeared to be frustrated and butted in: ‘Yeah, she’s going through a lot of stuff, she’s going through a lot of stuff!

‘And the family knew all of that and they made the decision together to show this process, because she thought it was going to go in a different direction but Wendy’s where she needs to be right now.

‘Would we like the family to have more access? Absolutely, because we want to make sure that they’re as comfortable with what’s happening as she is and they can’t get to her, and that’s concerning for any family member.

‘So, we’re going to continue to keep our fingers crossed and hope that this resolves itself, because it’s not an easy thing. Our best wishes and good wishes because, as I said, she’s been a friend of the show and a friend to quite a few of us for quite some time,’ Whoopi added.



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