Controversy over Taylor Armstrong‘s memoir, published mere months after her estranged husband Russell Armstrong‘s suicide, has been attracting a lot of attention in the press – particularly because speculation over the truth behind her allegations has emerged.
Recent rumors have posited that Taylor’s antics and the negative attention she is receiving because of her penchant for dishonesty (along with a recent lawsuit that may involve Bravo) has Bravo seeing her as a “liability,” which will likely jeopardize her spot on next season’s cast. Well, Taylor is speaking out defending herself and her actions – and explaining why it’s important that she remain a part of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills!
Standing by her decision to publish her book, Taylor insists her motive was not money. Who does she expect to believe that? “I know how it looks,” she says, responding to a question about capitalizing from Russell’s death. She claims she wanted people to start talking about the horrors of domestic violence. “If I didn’t think this would make a difference, I wouldn’t be doing it,” she told the Los Angeles Times. “Trust me, you don’t make that much money off a book.” But you do make money off publicity tours, appearances, and advances associated with a book!
While Taylor is adamant she did not release this memoir with any untoward intentions, it is well-known that Russell’s family and friends–most vocally his sister Laurie Kelsoe –are insistent that the allegations Taylor makes are completely untrue and have made Russell seem like someone he was not. Laurie believes the show has “completely defaced his character,” telling Dr. Drew in a recent interview: “Shame on [Taylor] for doing this and for thinking that all he was was bad … if that’s the case, then why did she stay there and spend his money?”
Firing back, Taylor insists Laurie wasn’t a part of their lives and had no idea what went on behind closed doors. “There are a number of people who are trying to find their way into the story of my life with Russell,” Taylor asserts. “Russell’s sister Laurie Kelsoe … has no basis for saying anything about my life with Russell. She lives almost 1,500 miles away and saw our family on a small number of occasions.”
“The facts are there,” Taylor says of what went on in her marriage. But that is exactly the problem. There are no facts – only Taylor’s so-called recollections about what occurred. Which is why more questions are emerging about the validity of her claims. The LA Times asked Dr. Catherine Hwang, an orbital and oculo-plastics surgeon at UCLA’s Jules Stein Eye Institute, about orbital floor injuries.
Dr. Hwang, who did not treat Taylor, explains fractures of that nature can occur from a range of incidents. Taylor has maintained that she had no bruising after Russell “raised up one elbow and punched me hard, in the right eye.” Dr. Hwang finds that surprising, given Taylor’s age and the nature of the injury. “Usually, older patients have some sort of bruising,” Dr. Hwang mentioned. “But anything is possible.”
Taylor planned to write her book before Russell’s death – although she claims he was not aware of her intentions. If Russell had not passed away, Taylor says, “I don’t think I could have been as honest.” Citing the difficulty she had putting her life out there and down on paper, Taylor explains: “Bearing your soul to people is really hard.”
“I wanted it to be really raw and honest,”Taylor shared with OK! at Barnes & Noble at The Grove.
While Russell had no knowledge of her intentions to publish a book, Taylor recalls he had ascertained that news of her injuries would emerge in the media. “He did know, though, that the extent of the abuse would likely come out in the press.”
“I spent a couple of days in Cedars-Sinai after [the eye] incident. There were nurses around. Plenty of people saw me in the operating room. The odds of keeping that under wraps, I mean, come on. He absolutely knew it was all going to come out. That was really something he was dreading.”
“One of Russell’s big concerns, which he would bring up constantly after my eye incident, is, ‘Do you think the D.A. could press charges against me and put me in jail whether you press charges or not?’ I hate to say it, I would have wanted to protect him from that.”
As for her decision to release the
novel memoir a “hot minute” after Russell took his life, Taylor believes it was imperative that she get her story out there quickly. “I just didn’t feel like waiting was necessary. Also, I didn’t want to wait until I had euphoric recall and forgetting about all of the things that had happened.”
“Unfortunately, there are so many people out there that are living in dangerous situations that I really felt like it was important enough for me to get this story out there and take the criticism that comes with it,” she adds.
And defending herself against any involvement in Russell’s financial dealings, Taylor a businesswoman herself, claims she had no role in his businesses. Multiple reports have come forward contesting this. “I scratch my head about the finance stuff all the time,” Taylor muses. “I’m still trying to pick up the pieces of the mess that was left behind.”
“I have days when I’m in a ball, where I just sit and stare at the wall and just cry. … I have every emotion in the world,” she says of dealing with the loss. “I have incredible sadness for Russell. I miss him, I long for him. But I’m angry with him for leaving this mess for me to clean up.” Apparently she’s resilient enough to hit the red carpet on weekly basis!
Confronting a recent report that she is having an affair with her married attorney, Taylor dismissed it as gossip. “Oh, it’s just ridiculous,” Taylor laughed. “I spent Valentine’s Day with my little girl and it was just beautiful for us. I am so focused on us right now and then to have this ridiculous stuff coming out in the press, is just frustrating for us, but what are you going to do? It’s what I signed up for.” And she wants to sign up for more!
Taylor thinks her story can help other woman, which is why she believes Bravo should include her in a third season of the show. “If there’s a Season 3, I think it’s important to see what happens next [for me],” she said. “I’m still working on myself. And I have to say for the first time in my life, I’m OK being alone. Every little thing that I thought was going to be so horrible, really hasn’t been. I think for a Season 3 it would be nice for people to see the progression … and the lows too, because it’s certainly not all good days.”
“There is a lot changing in my life right now and I think that people need to see what that looks like as I grow and get stronger, so I think that would be interesting!” I, personally, do not believe we need to see anymore of Taylor – but that’s just me!
[Photo Credit: Daniel Tanner/WENN.com]
THOUGHTS ON TAYLOR’S DECISION TO RELEASE HER STORY SO SOON AFTER RUSSELL’S DEATH? DO YOU WANT TO SEE TAYLOR RETURN FOR SEASON 3 OF RHOBH? DO YOU THINK SHE WILL BE ASKED BACK?