RHOC: Braunwyn Windham-Burke Says She's an Alcoholic as Kelly Dodd & Shannon Beador Make Amends
During Wednesday's season 15 premiere, Braunwyn Windham-Burke admitted to having a drinking problem following a hard-partying trip to Miami to celebrate Kelly Dodd's now-husband Rick Leventhal's 60th birthday.
Braunwyn, 42, made the admission while speaking to Emily Simpson — who had called her out for drinking too much last season.
"I am very nervous right now," Braunwyn told Emily, 44, as the two got together at her house. "Some things have happened. First of all, I need to say that I am sorry."
"About what?" Emily asked.
"You called me out on my drinking last year," Braunwyn said. "Instead of taking it to heart, I really pushed you away. Basically, I think I just got angry with you, and I came up with reasons to be mad."
Braunwyn admitted that she hadn't had the best "last few months," telling Emily that her trip to Miami was "bad."
"I didn't stop drinking for four days," she said. "Every hour I would keep doing a shot. I was drinking so much I thought I was going to die."
Emily chimed in, saying, "To me, there was obviously a problem because I felt like you were masking something and doing it with alcohol."
Braunwyn revealed in a confessional interview that she began drinking at the age of 14 when she was living with her grandfather. At the time, she explained that she was dealing with "some abandonment."
"Someone handed me a warm beer, and it was a peacefulness that I've never felt before," Braunwyn added in her confessional interview.
Back at her house with Emily, Braunwyn revealed that her husband Sean told her, "You're going to rehab if you have one more drink." She admitted that she was scared of who she was "without" alcohol, adding, "The vulnerability is hard for me."
Emily comforted Braunwyn, saying, "I want you to know that I am your friend and that I will do whatever I can to support you. Is your goal to never drink again?"
"I don't think I can never drink again, but yeah, it has to be forever," Braunwyn said.
In another confessional, Braunwyn further addressed her issues. "I don't know if it's divine intervention, but for the first time in my life I can say, 'My name is Braunwyn and I'm an alcoholic," she said.
Prior to her raw reveal, the mother of seven invited Kelly, 45, and Shannon Beador over in hopes that the two could squash their beef.
As fans recall, Kelly and Shannon, 56, were at odds because Kelly had been contacting Jim Bellino, who was suing Shannon and former Housewife Tamra Judge. Jim — the ex-husband of her former RHOC star Alexis Bellino — took legal action over supposed negative comments made on a podcast. The women denied defaming Jim, and Shannon is in the clear now because a judge dismissed Jim's suit against her. However, Shannon remained upset at Kelly for trying to involve herself in the case.
When Shannon arrived at Braunwyn's house, Kelly presented her with a gift. Shannon opened the wrapped present, finding a case of UNO cards. Kelly's gift pokes at the nickname for Shannon and ex-Housewives Tamra and Vicki Gunvalson: the "Tres Amigas."
"It's an olive branch," Shannon said of the gift, going on to address her issues with Kelly.
"Kelly, I have to say what I was upset about was just that the step was taken to reach out to the opposing side," Shannon said of Kelly offering to be subpoenaed as a character witness in Jim's case.
"You and I had multiple conversations about how devastating the [lawsuit] was," Shannon told Kelly.
Kelly insisted that she wasn't trying to hurt Shannon, but rather was trying to get back at Tamra for "spreading lies."
"I felt gained up on by the three of you," Kelly said of Shannon, Tamara and Vicki.
"You were upset with Tamra and you didn't think it was going to affect me," Shannon said, trying to understand.
"My intensions were to get back at Tamra," Kelly explained. "She was relentless. Desperate times call for desperate measures."
Kelly and Shannon then apologized to each other.
"I think it's really nice that the three of us are sitting down here," Shannon said of herself, Kelly and Braunwyn. "You and I did have a special friendship that I was really disappointed fell apart. I'm so imperfect, but I really don't attack people's characters, so I apologize if you think that."
Kelly echoed similar sentiments, saying, "My intentions were not to hurt you and if you feel I was, I apologize. I want to move on."
Shannon, who recently started dating a man named John Janssen, shared in a confessional interview that she is in such a "positive, happy state" in her life that she didn't want drama.
"I don't want to fight with people, I hate fighting. I'm willing to move forward," Shannon said.
Back at Braunwyn's house, the women basked in their clean slate, with Kelly saying, "We're all [now] living in the same neighborhood."
However, it seems the sweet reunion was short-lived. A preview for the rest of the season shows Shannon getting into it with both Braunwyn and Kelly.
"Don't you dare accuse me of something," Shannon screams at Braunwyn in the teaser for what's to come.
"You're being a negative Nancy," Kelly tells Shannon also in the preview.
The premiere also followed Emily after her hip surgery, Gina Kirschenheiter starting her new chapter with Travis Mullen, and new Housewife Elizabeth Lyn Vargas opening up about her life after divorce.
Season 15 will also show the women grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic. Shannon, who revealed in July that she and her three daughters tested positive, is seen using what appears to be a breathing device.
The Real Housewives of Orange County airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET on Bravo.