"They both told production they weren't returning to the show months ago," an insider told PEOPLE of the Southern Charm stars

By Dave Quinn
May 14, 2020 10:03 AM
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Southern Charm's seventh season is going to look very different for Bravo viewers.

On Tuesday, founding cast member Cameran Eubanks shocked fans when she announced on Instagram that she'd be leaving the long-running reality show. And she may not be the only one.

Naomie Olindo and Chelsea Meissner also won't be back next season, sources confirm to PEOPLE.

On Wednesday, Olindo dropped a major hint about her exit, telling Eubanks on Instagram, "I'm so damn proud of you and us @chelseameissner58."

Reps for Bravo, Olindo and Meissner had no comment to PEOPLE, but a source close to production confirmed their departures.

"They both told production they weren't returning to the show months ago," the insider said. "Naomi and Chelsea, like Cam, are just tired of the reality TV drama and don't want to live their lives this way."

Later, Olindo and Meissner confirmed the news themselves on Instagram Stories.

Credit: Naomie Olindo Instagram
Naomie Olindo and Chelsea Meissner
| Credit: Rodolfo Martinez/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images (2)

Meissner, 34, has had more experience on the medium than Olindo, having competed on the 24th season of Survivor back in 2011. She first appeared on Southern Charm in season 3, which aired in 2016, as a guest before moving to a recurring cast member in its fourth season and a full-time cast member in seasons 5 and 6.

Olindo, 27, also began appearing on Southern Charm in its third season while dating one of the show's stars, Craig Conover. She remained a recurring cast member during the three years she dated Conover and moved to a full-time star after their split in season 6.

A second source tells PEOPLE Olindo's current relationship with her anesthesiologist boyfriend, Metul Shah, was also a factor for her exit.

"She's seen what reality television can do to relationships and isn't interested in exposing herself again to that kind of scrutiny," the source says. "She's got a great partner in Metul. They are very much in love and there's no reason to mess with that."

Cameran Eubanks
| Credit: Tommy Garcia/Bravo

Eubanks knows a thing or two about trying to maintain relationship privacy while in the reality TV spotlight.

On Wednesday, AllAboutTheTea.com alleged that Eubanks' husband, Jason Wimberly, had been having a two-year affair behind Eubanks' back.

The outlet reported its source claimed Eubanks "was handling it privately off camera" and was "devastated" when she found out producers were plotting to bring up the allegation on the season.

Hours later, Eubanks released a lengthy statement about the matter on Instagram, saying her decision to leave Southern Charm wasn't because of what she called those "insidious rumors" about her marriage.

"My decision was made and given to Bravo months ago and had absolutely nothing to do with ridiculous and fake rumors about my marriage," Eubanks wrote. "Please disregard any fabricated rumor. It’s a ploy for ratings and that’s it."

She went on to stand by her husband's side.

"What upsets me the most is that my husband, who is the most sincere and faithful human I know, is being falsely dragged into this," Eubanks said. "It disgusts me."

"He always supported me filming the show even though he wanted no part of the spotlight," she said.

Wimberly did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment. He and Eubanks have been married since 2014 and share daughter 2½-year-old daughter Palmer Corinne.

Later in her note, Eubanks — who got her start on The Real World; San Diego back in 2004 — stressed that she was ready to leave reality TV behind.

"I can’t get too upset though because this is what you sign up for when you put your life on reality TV…and why I’m getting out of it now," she said. "Drama is needed to stay relevant on reality television and sadly false rumors about others are sometimes created. Make of that what you will and consider the source."

"Now I absolutely know I was smart to leave the party early," she said. "My gut has never failed me."

Cameran Eubanks with her husband Jason Wimberly and daughter Palmer
| Credit: Cameran Eubanks/Instagram

Southern Charm debuted on March 3, 2014.

The Bravo series chronicles the lives of socialites who reside in Charleston, South Carolina. Last season, Eubanks, Olindo and Meissner all appeared alongside Conover, Shep Rose, Austen Kroll, Kathryn Dennis and Eliza Limehouse.

Production on Southern Charm's seventh season had begun earlier this year but paused amid the nationwide stay-at-home orders caused by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. It's unclear when production will resume.