Derek Hough and wife Hayley Erbert share intimate Christmas snap after her brain surgery

A woman in a silver dress stands with a man who wears a beige blazer with a gold broach and white shirt
Derek Hough and Hayley Erbert posted a Christmas picture together following Erbert’s brain surgery.
(Willy Sanjuan / Invision / Associated Press)

Derek Hough and wife Hayley Erbert had a lot to celebrate this Christmas, and they wanted the world to know it.

On Christmas Day, the dancing power couple shared a photo of themselves sharing a kiss on Instagram as they sat in front of their tree and presents. Erbert is notably wearing a head wrap, following a series of emergency and reconstructive brain and skull surgeries earlier this month.

“Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas! 🎄” Erbert captioned the duo’s shared posted on Monday. “Cherishing the greatest gift of all. The precious gift of life and the love we share. Hold your loved ones close and treasure every moment.”


Derek Hough’s wife, Hayley Erbert, underwent emergency brain surgery for a burst blood vessel following a Tuesday dance performance near Washington D.C.

Dec. 8, 2023

Comments of support and love for the “Dancing With the Stars” couple flowed from their television co-stars and the greater dance community.

“So good to see you! Merry Christmas! 🎄🎁 sending you so much love. ❤️,” wrote “Dancing With the Stars” judge Carrie Ann Inaba.

The show’s co-host Alfonso Ribeiro commented, “Love you guys. Merry Christmas. Looking great.”

Derek Hough’s wife, dancer Hayley Erbert, undergoes skull surgery after a recent brain-bleed operation. A blood vessel in her brain burst after a performance.

Dec. 20, 2023

“You are our Christmas miracle 🎄❤️,” wrote the show’s other co-host and Hough’s sister, Julianne Hough.

Dance legend and former “American Idol” judge Paula Abdul commented, “Merry Christmas and may continued blessed prayers 🙏🏼💕 I’m sending so much love your way!”

After a Dec. 5 performance near Washington, D.C., Erbert was rushed to a hospital where she was diagnosed with a cranial hematoma from a burst blood vessel, Hough has said. She underwent emergency surgery to stop the bleeding.


Hayley Erbert underwent a successful skull implant surgery, her husband Derek Hough said. The surgery followed her sudden hospitalization for a brain bleed.

Dec. 22, 2023

Hough said a follow-up surgery was required to install a skull implant to “restore the skull to its natural shape and protect the brain from injury.” Since the initial surgery, Erbert was missing a piece of her skull and had been wearing a helmet.

Erbert had been on the road with Hough since October for his Symphony of Dance Tour. She was a major part of the show, dancing with her husband throughout their Oxon Hill, Md., performance. However, Erbert was noticeably absent during that show’s final bow when Hough acknowledged each of the key performers. Several days later, Hough announced her diagnosis and emergency surgery.

Erbert and Hough married last August after dating for eight years. They first met on ABC’s dance competition series when Hough was a dancer paired with competing celebrities and Erbert was a troupe member. Hough is a record six-time “DWTS” winner. In 2020, he joined the panel of judges for Season 29, replacing longtime judge Len Goodman, who died earlier this year.

Times staff writer Jonah Valdez contributed to this report.