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I remember idolizing the California rich and famous with their million dollar convertible cars, diamond encrusted watches and Peach Pit lunches alongside Color Me Badd. Things Beverly Hills used to be known for: ridiculously lavish lifestyles (thank you, Robin Leach!), Rodeo Drive, a snobby yet endearing Girl Scout troop (hats sashes off to you, Shelley Long!) and 90210.

Things Beverly Hills is known for now: Kyle Richards’ White Party (#sosorrybevhills), Jiggy as well as the Taylor Armstrong and Russell Armstrong tragedy. Whatever happened to “Donna Martin graduates!” and the iconic Pretty Woman mantra, “You work on commission, right? Big mistake. Huge!” Simpler times, I guess.

Because she’s not going anywhere one celebrity site is shedding more insight into Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’ Taylor Armstrong’s life… and the decision she may have hoped would secure her a spot on the potential third season of Bravo’s hit show. I’m exhausted writing about it, so she surely has to be tired living it. One would hope…don’t I wish.

RadarOnline.com is citing Taylor’s timing for her divorce filing from the late Russell Armstrong as a necessity to keep her in the network’s good graces. The site is reporting that Taylor “finally decided to file for divorce from her then-husband… because executives at Bravo had implemented a ban prohibiting the couple from appearing on the hit show after Russell sent executives legal letters threatening to sue.”

We all watched awkwardly (insert typical metaphor here — it’s a train wreck… you don’t want to see it, but you can’t look away) on the most recent episode of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. You recall that Taylor and Russell were turned away from Kyle’s annual White Party by the teary hostess (and a bada$$ Paul Nassif!) after Russell threatened fellow cast mate Camille Grammar with a lawsuit via e-mail for alleging abuse against his wife.

However, it seems Camille wasn’t the only one on the receiving end of Russell’s litigious barrage because a source close to the show claims, “During filming of the show, as the season progressed, [he] started sending blistering letters and e-mails to Bravo and NBC Universal executives threatening lawsuits. Russell was furious that Taylor had discussed their serious marital issues, including the fact that he hit her on multiple occasions.”

The insider continues, saying that Russell was irate “the fellow housewives were now talking about it on the show.” The insider reveals, “Russell would have had no legal leg to stand on because it was Taylor who was telling the girls this stuff. Bravo and NBC decided that Russell and Taylor were more trouble than they were worth, and decided to end filming with them, as soon as it became apparent that Russell was going to continue down that path.”

So what’s a girl to do?  Her spotlight in jeopardy and her husband an alleged ticking time-bomb, the Bravo star did what needed to be done.  The source says, “Taylor decided to pursue the separation first, but then she thought to get back on the show, she would need to file for divorce, so that she could appear on the show again, if she promised executives that she was leaving him for good.” Despite all the clauses the insider throws out in that statement, the entire scene is just plain sad. Whether you believe a woman was so desperate to remain on a television program that she would throw her marriage under the bus or that she was saving herself and her young daughter from terrors to come, the whole situation was/is/and will continue to be horrific and heart wrenching.

The insider continues, “[F]or a very long time [Taylor knew] that she needed to leave Russell because of the verbal and physical abuse. Being taken off a show that she loved doing because of his actions was the catalyst that finally made her pull the trigger on her marriage. Russell knew he was going to be exposed and was in full damage control mode. Ultimately, there was nothing he could do to stop it.”

Taylor won’t be seen on the show again until the new year according to the source who reports, “The episode that will air on Monday night will show all of the girls except Taylor going to Hawaii. Taylor will call the girls, and tell them on speakerphone while they are on their Hawaiian holiday that she had decided to leave Russell.”

Again, regardless of your opinions on this tragedy (and I have my own, believe me) it’s nothing but awful given Russell’s suicide, the fact that an innocent five-year-old is involved, and the notion that it’s all playing out for our “entertainment.” So sad, and yet please know the irony of me writing about it isn’t lost on this gal. Here’s hoping that outside the world that is Beverly Hills (past and present) you and yours revel in family and friends this holiday season.

THOUGHTS ON THIS NEW REVELATION?  DO YOU THINK TAYLOR FILED FOR DIVORCE TO STAY ON THE SHOW?  WHAT DO YOU THINK OF RUSSELL THREATENING THE NETWORK WITH LAWSUITS?

Photo credit: [WENN.com]

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