"I am incredibly proud of Yolanda's determination and mission to find a cure," David says in a statement to PEOPLE

By Aili Nahas
Updated December 22, 2015 10:15 AM
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David Foster is setting the record straight about his ex Yolanda‘s health struggles.

“Over the past few weeks, a great deal of inaccurate or baseless information has been reported claiming to represent my thoughts and feelings,” David says in a statement to PEOPLE. “It is painful to watch this happen repeatedly – especially while trying to cope with the personal nature of the challenges surrounding the breakup of our loving marriage.”

David, 66, and Yolanda, 51, announced earlier this month they were divorcing after four years of marriage and nine years together. She has been battling Lyme disease since 2012.

“I have always had and continue to have the utmost respect and love for Yolanda, which is why it is so frustrating to see headlines questioning her chronic debilitating illness,” David’s statement continues.

On last week’s episode of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Taylor Armstrong seemingly questioned Yolanda’s Lyme disease diagnosis, and several news organizations have reported that David and others close to Yolanda question her health struggles. But in his statement to PEOPLE, David says that’s not the case.

“I have been by Yolanda’s side over the past four years to the best of my ability as she battled with the complexities of her Lyme diagnosis,” David continues. “I am incredibly proud of Yolanda’s determination and mission to find a cure, and how brave and open she has been by sharing her story in the hopes of changing the future for others.”

In a blog post published following last week’s RHOBH, Yolanda also defended her diagnosis.

“Those of you who have experienced chronic illness, you know what I’m talking about. What defines suffering? You will never hear someone who’s walked in my shoes speak the way Taylor spoke on tonight’s episode,” Yolanda wrote. “I truly hope she never has to experience the journey she questions me for sharing.”