Wendy Williams: Her Tough Road to Fame and Happiness
Wendy Williams fainted on-air during her Halloween show
Nothing can keep Wendy Williams down.
The 53-year-old daytime diva fainted live on her self-titled talk show Monday when she became overheated in her Halloween costume — but she returned right after the rushed commercial break to finish the broadcast.
“I want to hurry up and get back out here and close out the show like the champ I am,” she said on Tuesday’s episode of her mindset at the time. “Maybe that’s my fault for pushing myself too hard. But I have a very, very hard work ethic.”
Williams — known for her no-holds-barred hot takes on pop culture, which have also landed her in hot water with some celebrities — was born a fighter in Ocean Township, New Jersey.
“I grew up a fat girl in Jersey with low self-esteem. I’m a showgirl, but I wasn’t comfortable with being stared at,” she told DuJour magazine in 2016.
And in a 2014 feature in PEOPLE, she discussed how she developed her self-confidence.
“Honestly,” she said, describing her body image issues, “my life before 21 sucked.”
“In high school I was just the girl standing on the side, looking at everybody having fun and saying, ‘I can’t wait to get out of here and set the world on fire,’ ” she added.
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Williams made a name for herself on New York and Philadelphia radio, launching The Wendy Williams Show in 2008. But for 10 years, she battles a cocaine addiction (“Drugs were a demon I had to overcome,” she said), and later struggled to start a family, suffering a few miscarriages before conceiving son Kevin Hunter Jr, now 17.
“Life is hard on us women,” she told PEOPLE, tearing up.
Now, though, she’s happier and more successful than ever. As she told PEOPLE when she turned 50, “I feel like I’m just getting started.”
The Wendy Williams Show airs weekdays (check local listings).