Dr. Ruth Westheimer talks about her new role as New York’s Loneliness Ambassador

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Tuesday, November 14, 2023, 11:24 a.m

New York's Loneliness Ambassador Dr. Ruth Westheimer is there in overtime

NEW YORK (WABC) – The life force of Dr. Ruth Westheimer, who helped bring conversations about sex out of the shadows, is now tackling a different topic in a role that is the first of its kind in the country.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul named Westheimer the state’s honorary ambassador for loneliness on Thursday.

As New York state works to combat its loneliness epidemic, “Honorary Ambassador Ruth Westheimer’s help may be just what the doctor ordered,” Hochul said in a statement.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Westheimer aims to help New Yorkers with social isolation, which is linked to physical and mental health problems such as cardiovascular disease, depression, dementia and early death.

The 95-year-old psychosexual therapist and author of more than 37 books is a Holocaust survivor who recently recovered from a mild stroke.

In an interview on “Extra Time” with Eyewitness News host Bill Ritter, Westheimer said she was feeling good and making progress.

Regarding her new role, she says she still has the “strength and ability to help” and wants people to admit it to themselves when they feel lonely.

She says once people do that, they can start talking about the remedies that can help them ease their loneliness.

You can watch her full interview with Extra Time’s Bill Ritter in the media player above.

CNN Wire contributed to this report.


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Russell Falcon

Russell Falcon is a Nytimas U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Russell Falcon joined Nytimas in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: russellfalcon@nytimas.com.

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