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Sarah Michelle Gellar: Selma Blair won’t let MS define her

February 28, 2019

Sarah Michelle Gellar praised Selma Blair for not letting Multiple Sclerosis “define her”.

The 46-year-old actress attended the Vanity Fair Oscars Party on Sunday (24.02.19) - where she used a cane to support her movement - following months away from the spotlight after her diagnosis with the illness, which affects the central nervous system, disrupting the flow of information within the brain and between the brain and body, often leading to speech impediment.

Sarah - who starred in ‘Cruel Intentions’ with Selma in 1999 - posted a touching tribute to her friend on Instagram after her return to the “world stage” at the bash in Los Angeles and ahead of her appearance on ‘Good Morning America’ to speak publicly for the first time since her diagnosis in 2018, and gushed about how proud she is of Selma for dealing with MS with “grace and dignity”.

Alongside a picture of the ‘Legally Blonde’ star on the red carpet at the Oscars event, the 41-year-old star wrote: “This is my dear friend @selmablair Last night she stood on the world stage for the first time, since being diagnosed with MS. And later this week, she is taking an even bigger step, and speaking publicly on @goodmorningamerica (with, my girl crush @robinrobertsgma ) To say I’m proud, would be a gross understatement. When I have a cold, I want to hide from the world under my covers. But not Selma. She is facing this diagnosis, the way she faces everything, with dignity, grace and head on. I know the support and encouragement that she has received on this platform has truly been a source of strength for her. This is not an easy journey, but Selma will not let this define her. I love you James. (sic)”

During her appearance on ‘Good Morning America’ on Tuesday (26.02.19), Selma - who has seven-year-old son Arthur with her ex, fashion designer Jason Bleick - revealed she would “self-medicate” and “drink” alcohol to help her cope with her chronic pain from the condition.

She also revealed that when she finally got her diagnosis, it was a “relief” because she was struggling to be “taken seriously” by doctors when she shared her medical problems.

She said: “I was self-medicating when [Arthur] wasn’t with me. I was drinking, I was in pain. I wasn’t always drinking, but there were times when I couldn’t take it. And I was really struggling with how am I going to get by in life.

“There were times when I couldn’t take it and I was really struggling with how I’m going to get by in life not being taken seriously by doctors.

“I dropped my son off at school a mile away and before I got home I’d have to pull over and take a nap ... it was killing me. And so when I got the diagnosis, I cried with relief.”

She added: “I am doing very well. Being able to just put out what being in the middle of an aggressive form of Multiple Sclerosis is like. So my speech, I have spasmodic dysphonia right now ... It is interesting to be here to say this is what my particular case looks like right now.

“I had tears. They weren’t tears of panic, they were tears of knowing that I now had to give in to a body that had loss of control and there was some relief in that. No one has the energy to talk when they’re in a flare-up, but I do because I love a camera.”