Betty White Thought She Would Die Before Her ‘Golden Girls’ Castmates

Fans of Betty White, former star of The Golden Girls, are often worried about her health. Whenever she trends on Twitter, most of her devoted followers become fearful something terrible has happened to the star. Now that White is close to 100 years old, some are dreading the day her death is announced.  

Some might want to avoid the topic, but White has given her death some thought. She once said she thought she would die before her Golden Girls cast mates.

Betty White on ‘The Golden Girls’

Bea Arthur as Dorothy, Rue McClanahan as Blanche,  and Betty White as Rose Nylund | NBC/NBCU Photo Bank
Bea Arthur as Dorothy, Rue McClanahan as Blanche, and Betty White as Rose Nylund | NBC/NBCU Photo Bank

Betty White played the character Rose Nylund on The Golden Girls from 1985 to 1992. Her character was best known for being sweet, yet clueless. Rose was also known for being from St. Olaf, a township in Minnesota. White credits the popularity of the show and her character with good writing. Here’s what she told DVDTalk.

Well I have to go back to the writing. You just don’t get good writing that holds up like that over time. Because people will often say, ‘I’ve probably seen each [episode] six times.’ I think the audience knows the lines now better than we ever did. But they seem to be able to laugh at it again.

Now, you can give us all the credit you want to, but we can’t save a bad show. We can screw up a good show, but we can’t save a bad one. It was the writing that makes that hold up. And I am eternally grateful.

Betty White, DVDTalk

Betty White thought she would die before her ‘Golden Girls’ Castmates

Fans don’t want to think about White’s death, but she has already given the topic of death and dying a lot of thought. In her book, If You Ask Me, the actor says she thought she would be one of the first Golden Girls stars to go. She’s surprised she is still around, and her former co-stars have all passed on.

“I always thought I would be the one who would go—particularly with The Golden Girls, because I was the oldest,” wrote White. “But then we lost all of them, and I’m the only one left and I’m still functioning. I think, ‘How did that happen?’”

The toughest part about loss

For White, the toughest part about losing someone is the feeling of loneliness that comes afterward. She also says she initially had difficulty making decisions after her husband, Allen Ludden, died because she was so used to having her husband there to help her decide on things.

I think the toughest thing about loss, and the hardest challenge, is the isolation you feel in its aftermath. You spent so much time sharing your life with someone, talking through issues, even disagreeing about things, and all of a sudden there’s a hole.

There’s nobody there, and you think, ‘Well who’s in charge?’  My God, it’s me. I have to make the decisions. I can’t share the decisions any longer. And that’s tough because you don’t fully trust your own judgment.

Betty White, If You Ask Me

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