Entertainment TV 'RHOC' 's Braunwyn Windham-Burke Is Dating'' Season 6 Alum Fernanda Rocha: 'She's Definitely Special' "We didn't become more than friends until recently," Braunwyn Windham-Burke said By Dory Jackson Dory Jackson Instagram Twitter Website Dory Jackson is an Associate Editor for PEOPLE's digital TV team. While at the brand, she's had the opportunity to interview a long list of celebrities, from Kate Hudson to Pierce Brosnan to Billy Porter. She also recaps popular TV shows like The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and Vanderpump Rules.The New York-based Maryland native graduated from Randolph-Macon College in May 2016 with a focus in Communication Studies and Journalism. She came to PEOPLE in March 2021 after working at a number of major news companies, including Newsweek and Us Weekly. She also previously co-hosted a podcast called "Idol Nation." People Editorial Guidelines Published on June 21, 2021 04:51 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Braunwyn Windham-Burke is seeing former Real Housewives of Orange County cast member Fernanda Rocha. A rep for Windham-Burke, 43, confirmed to PEOPLE that she and Rocha — who appeared on season 6 of RHOC — started out as friends and are now dating. They're not in an exclusive relationship at this time, however. Rocha told PEOPLE, "I am enjoying spending time with Braunwyn and learning about her personal journey. She is in an amazing place and I am so happy for her." Windham-Burke — whose exit from RHOC was reported by PEOPLE exclusively last week — recently opened up about her budding romance with Rocha. "We have been hanging out," Windham-Burke told E! News. "We are close and she's been an amazing support to me. I'm glad I met her. I will say this: There have been some rumors about when we went from being friends to a little bit more than friends. It was after she got divorced, so there's nothing salacious like that happening." Braunwyn Windham-Burke and Fernanda Rocha. Joe Scarnici/Getty New Celebrity Couples of 2021 "We've been hanging out for awhile. We didn't become more than friends until recently. She's definitely special," she added. Windham-Burke shares seven children with her husband of over 20 years Sean Burke, with whom she has an open marriage. Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories. Prior to Rocha, Windham-Burke — who came out as lesbian last December — was dating a woman named Kris. In April, a source confirmed to PEOPLE that "Kris broke up with Braunwyn well over a month ago," adding that "Braunwyn understood." "They were at two very different places in their lives and Kris wanted more of a commitment than Braunwyn was able to give, so it was better to part ways. They're still friendly, and each want the best for the other," the source said. Speaking to Page Six about her new romance with Rocha, Windham-Burke said that "having someone special in my life who was an out and proud woman on reality television was so helpful in the beginning stages of our relationship." Braunwyn Windham-Burke on Her Open Marriage with Husband Sean: It's 'a Day by Day Process' "What started as a friendship has become something more," she continued. "I am so grateful for her. She is beyond amazing. Not only has she been a source of strength, but she has taken me under her wing and helped me navigate my coming out. Without the show, I never would have met Fernanda, so I am forever grateful for that." The pair attended the GUARDaHEART Foundation's Unmasked Heart Disease event together on Friday, according to the outlet, and were reportedly spotted cuddling and kissing. The reality star also told Page Six that Rocha is taking her away "for a few days," which she said is "exactly" what she needs at the moment.