Shannon Beador got candid about the 40 lb. weight gain she experienced over the past year on Monday’s season 12 premiere of The Real Housewives of Orange County — admitting, “Today I look in the mirror and I don’t recognize who I am.”
Though she’s been dieting and exercising, Beador hasn’t been able to drop the weight — which she claimed she gained due to stress from the allegations made last season by costar Vicki Gunvalson while the stars were vacationing in Ireland.
“That stress caused me to eat more, caused me to drink more, and that’s a huge part of why I gained my weight,” she said while making dinner at her new beachside home in Corona del Mar.
“My weight gain has affected me and how I feel about myself,” she added. “I’m embarrassed about my body.”
The one thing Shannon hasn’t done is buy herself a new wardrobe to accommodate her growing body.
“I continue to buy clothes for myself, not in the size I am now,” she admitted later in the episode. “I don’t have a lot of things that fit me now, but I’m not going to buy fat clothes. ‘Cause when you start buying fat close, that’s me saying I’m okay with my weight.”
As a refresher, Gunvalson had claimed that Shannon’s husband David has “beat the s— out of [Shannon]” during their marriage — allegations Shannon herself vehemently denied during the three-part RHOC reunion.
“That was the darkest place for me,” a tearful Shannon had said, showing reunion host Andy Cohen pictures of bruising she received on her right shoulder and her right hip when she attempted to break open a door during a fight they had. “My husband did not beat me. He had had an affair on me and I was doing my best to bring my family back together.”
She also explained a 2003 call she made to police while she and David were having an argument.
“It was nothing physical,” Shannon said. “We had a verbal argument — I wanted the argument to end.”
When Gunvalson refused to apologize for her claims, Shannon fled the reunion couch in tears.
“You are horrible. You need to stop right now,” Shannon said. “I would never stay in a marriage if I were beat up. I would never teach that to my children.”
“Most people are going to believe me because I haven’t hid anything about my relationship with David,” she continued. “But what you have done? Now it’s on the show and it’s in the universe, there will be people that will go up to my children and say, ‘Your father beats your mother.’ … That is so damaging.”
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It appears the allegations and the weight gain also affected Shannon and David’s marriage. Though the two were in a good place last year, renewing their vows just two years after David’s affair, they’ve seemingly grown apart since last season.
“Last year David and I were in such a great place and he surprised me with a vow renewal that I thought would never happen,” Shannon said on Monday’s episode. “For my husband to be distant with me after that is pretty devastating.”
The Real Housewives of Orange County airs Monday (9 p.m. ET) on Bravo.