In response to the bombshell divorce papers filed by her husband yesterday, Tamra Barney is defending herself against allegations of infidelity.
Tamra’s husband, Simon Barney accused the Real Housewives of Orange County star of being unfaithful in the divorce papers he filed. Simon wrote: “Petitioner contends that Respondent has been verbally abusive and has committed acts of disloyalty and infidelity.”
Tamra has now taken to her facebook page to deny the cheating allegations. “Thanks to everyone who understands and supports me,” she wrote. “For the record, all accusations are false.”
Vicki Gunvalson, who is still in shock over the split news, is also defending her costar by telling UsWeekly, “Wonder who he thinks she cheated with?” she said in an email. “Personally, I think if Tamra spoke to a man Simon would call it cheating. Tamra has 3 little kids. That’s all I care about is making sure they get through all of this.”
A rep for Bravo revealed that Tamra, 42, “is going to share her story first on Bravo’s Watch What Happens Show hosted by Andy Cohen, airing next Thursday at midnight.”
Last night’s episode of The OC Housewives also touched on the couple’s marital issues. Tamra spoke several times about being unhappy in her marriage, while Simon believes all is well. We also had Gretchen Rossi attempt to reach out to Lynne Curtin’s daughter, Alexa, whom she thought was depressed much to Lynne and Alexa’s dismay. Something about Gretchen trying to help Alexa came off as insincere and self serving to me, but perhaps I’m wrong. Vicki also renewed her wedding vows to husband of 15 years, Don Gunvalson.
TELL US – DO YOU THINK TAMRA CHEATED? WHAT WERE YOUR THOUGHTS ON LAST NIGHT’S EPISODE? WAS GRETCHEN WRONG FOR APPROACHING ALEXIS THE WAY SHE DID?
Jim Bellino and Simon Barney both showed up on the trip after they repeatedly said their wives are not allowed to go on trips without them. Alexis Bellino and Tamra Barney both seemed to be okay with this, much to Vicki’s dismay. Vicki even refused to attend any events that the husbands, and Slade Smiley showed up to.
The ladies have now taken to their Bravo blogs to speak out on Floridagate. -
Here’s what Tamra Sue had to say:
“OK, so the guys went … get over it! The girls spent so much time together the only thing left was sleeping together and that wasn’t going to happen! The guys going all started with Simon, Jim Alexis, and I talking. As married couples with small kids it is very seldom that we take trips alone, together or apart. We thought it would be fun if the guys came and did guy things while the girls did their thing. So that is exactly what happened. The girls spent 80% of the time filming doing fabulous things; we even took a water taxi and went shopping downtown. The guys went golfing, worked out, and hung out by the pool. Everybody was happy … or so I thought. The last night we were there we went on the sunset cruise after our shopping trip. We thought it would be nice to have the guys there. I didn’t think for a second that Vicki would have a problem with it. I felt really bad when I saw how upset she was, but later found out that she had friends in town and went out to dinner with them.”
Alexis share her thoughts as well:
I’m not quite sure why Vicki was so upset about the boys coming on the trip to Florida. To be honest, she never even saw them until after hours …which was fine with me. The girls trip was never presented to me as a ‘GIRLS ONLY’ trip. I never received the memo: “NO MEN ALLOWED.” I would have laughed had she stated that to me. Nor did she pay for our trip, which would have given her more of a right to assign rules. I would not go somewhere that had certain ‘rules’ in advance, like your husband is not allowed. Not to mention the fact that Jim and Simon invited Donn to join them. So it was never a question of Vicki not mentioning to Donn to come along. What really strikes me as shocking is the fact that Vicki did not want to join us on the fabulous yacht cruise because she was going to feel like a third wheel, but yet she wound up going out that night with another couple, thus being a third wheel. It just doesn’t quite register with me … it doesn’t make sense. It may be a little hypocritical.
Vicki gives he side of the story:
When we initially planned for the trip to be a “girls” trip, it was planned during the week and I thought really nothing of it that the guys weren’t invited. I had no idea it was going to turn into such a problem with the men. I had just finished a week in West Palm Beach for an insurance conference and thought it would be great to extend it for a few days and have the girls come down to join me in Ft. Lauderdale. Due to the fact it was during the week, Donn was fine with me continuing my stay for a few more days and wasn’t planning on taking time off of work to meet me. When I found out Simon and Jim were coming I thought, ‘Well, then it’s not a girls trip if the guys are joining us’ and I wondered how it would turn out. Even though Donn wasn’t planning on going, he told me to go anyways and to have a great time. In hindsight, once I knew the dynamics were changing with Simon and Jim coming, I probably should have listened to my gut and just gone home and not stayed for the few extra days. Simon and I had already had a few conflicts this summer, and I felt very uncomfortable being around him and really didn’t want to see him.
Never thought I would see the day I side with Vicki but I actually agree with her on this. There is something very controlling and slightly creepy about the men saying their wives are not allowed to go on trips without them. It seemed to come of a place of distrust rather than a place of wanting to spend more time with their spouses. I guess this is kinda understandable considering Alexis allegedly cheated on her first husband with a wealthier older man, perhaps Jim does not want history to repeat itself.
I don’t see the problem with the women having a girls trip, and having the husbands there would of course change the dynamics of the trip. Perhaps Vicki could have handled the whole thing better and just sucked it up, but apparently she and Simon had gotten into an argument off camera, and she did not feel comfortable being around Simon.
TELL US – WHAT DID YOU THINK OF THIS EPISODE? ARE YOU TEAM VICKI OR TEAM TAMRA/ALEXIS?
This season has chronicled the housewives’ financial struggles whether small or major. Gretchen Rossi had a garage sale, Jeana Keough went shopping with her daughter at H&M, Tamra Barney is now doing her own housework, and coming up soon will be the eviction of Lynne Curtin. Off camera, Slade Smiley’s financial difficulty is also common knowledge since the publication of a report showing he owes over $80,000 in back child support.
All of the above is a drastic turn from what we’re used to seeing from the OC Housewives. Long gone are the days of buying yatches, diamond rolexes and harleys. A new article from the Huffington Post details the financial woes of the housewives. “All of them have been very much affected by the economic situation,” explains the show’s executive producer, Douglas Ross.
Ross discusses the upcoming episode that will show Lynne’s family being evicted. “We try to treat it as gently but as honestly as we can,” Ross says. “We happened to have been there with our cameras … as part of our normal schedule when they were served the eviction notice. It’s one of those great reality TV moments that happened to be caught because we were in the right place at the right time.”
And though money can be a sensitive issue, the OC housewives don’t seem to mind sharing their struggles with millions of viewers. “It helps people across the nation because they realize it’s not just them,” says Jeana. “I’m pretty open. … There’s not too much I’ll hide. It was difficult for my husband … but the world’s in this place right now and I think people are going to relate to it,” adds Tamra.
Though the housewives get paid to appear on the show, Jeana says the amount (rumored to be $100,000 per housewife) is not enough to support a family. “It’s so minimal. It’s not enough to make your house payments. It’s more like a location fee to keep your house clean.”
Vicky Gunvalsonis however one of the luckier housewives as her insurance business is booming more than ever. “When I first started (on the show), I was working out of the house with two employees and now I have a huge office with 10 employees, 700 agents out in the field,” says Vicki, who plans to retire comfortably at age 55. Interestingly, the HuffingtonPost article quotes Vicki as saying she is 42 years old, which is false as she is 47.
Despite her very public eviction, Lynne says things are looking up for she and her family as she predicts they will be able to build a house next year. “My husband is a builder in Southern California. It’s not like he doesn’t try. He’s not sitting at home watching TV. He is going out and making an effort. … I’ve been married for 20 years. … We’ve had the high life we’ve had the low life. It’s just reality.”
They both brought along their significant others, as Jim Bellino and Slade Smiley were also in attendance. According to Alexis, she hit it off with Gretchen and Tamra Barney during the filming of the 5th season. The only housewife she clashed with was Vicki. Alexis has still yet to comment on the starting details revealed by her ex husband in an interview given to Star magazine a week ago.
In a recent interview, Gretchen also spoke fondly of Alexis. “We’ve become really good friends,” she said. “I like her a lot…She’s cool people.”
Before meeting Donn Gunvalson, her husband for the past 15 years, Vicki says her first marriage was fraught with emotional and verbal abuse, nearly getting physical at one point.
In an interview with Life & Style magazine, Vicki reveals she was just 21 when she married her first husband, Michael J. Wolfsmith. By the time she was 23, she had already given birth to a son, Michael, now 23, and was pregnant with her second child, daughter Briana, now 22. According to Vicki, Michael “was an alcoholic. He abused me verbally. He had many affairs during our marriage.” She recalls one horrifying incident while she was holding her baby Michael on her lap, “he went to hit me,” Vicki says. While he didn’t end up striking her, she was consumed with fear. “I was 23 years old and pregnant for the second time,” Vicki recalls. “I was really scared.
Vicki divorced him when she was 29. Vicki explains those six years, “were filled with screaming. I had to be his mother. I’d throw cold water on him to wake him up for work. It was a very hard life.” Vicki had a revelation as she approached age 30. “It was a pivotal point in my life,” she explains. “I didn’t want to live my 30s the way I’d lived my 20s. I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t loved.”
Vicki’s ex husband denied the allegations when contacted by Life & Style magazine. “I had bouts with alcohol, but it was not a problem,” he says. He also says he never cheated on Vicki or abused her emotionally or physically.
Slade Smiley took some time out of his very busy schedule to share with us his thoughts on the Real Housewives of Orange County. The blog, which has now been removed from Bravo’s website, was a no holds barrel in regards to Slade’s opinion on some of the OC ladies.
Slade, first appeared on Season One as the fiancé of original cast member Jo De La Rosa, he then briefly dated Lauri Waring, and is now dating Gretchen Rossi.
Some of the highlights from Slade’s rather long blog is below -
His Thoughts onVicki Gunvalson – “For some reason, Gretchen seems to have a soft spot for Vicki [Gunvalson], which I do not share… But that’s what makes Gretchen such an amazing person. Vicki will probably continue to be the same rude, self-absorbed work-a-holic she has always been. It’s her superiority complex that gets the best of her. Vicki has some real balls to say I am whoring Gretchen out. No one has felt the need to talk about all her secret little hotel rendezvous, I suggest you keep your comments to yourself.”
His Thoughts on Tamra Barney - “This girl cannot mind her own business. Do you think Tamra ever once called to check in on G when Jeff was sick? Of course not! Does she care about all the BS being written because of her unwarranted comments? Nope. She knows exactly why it happened and she is actually involved with the tool bag who is behind it. What’s funny is she thinks none of us know what her and Simon are up to. News flash Tamra, we all know and it’s not going to be pretty for you when it all comes out. The world is on to your game honey and Karma is a b***h.”
TELL US – DO YOU AGREE WITH SLADE? SHOULD HE BE BLOGGING ABOUT THE OC HOUSEWIVES?
The Real Housewives of Orange County attended TV GUIDE Magazine’s Hot List Party at SLS Hotel on November 10, 2009 in Beverly Hills, California. Jeana Keough, who will be leaving the show after 2 more episodes, was not in attendance. Neither was Alexis Bellino, the newest housewife.
Also in attendance wasSlade Smiley, honorable 6th housewife boyfriend of Gretchen Rossi. You can see more photos of the ladies below. Yikes at Tamra‘s hair, and Lynne‘s plastic surgeon should have his scalpel donated to some sort of plastic surgery hall of fame.
In other news, Vicki Gunvalson will be appearing on the Dr. Phil show on November 12th. No word yet on the reason for her appearance.
In a new interview with TVGuide, Gretchen opens up about the new season and tells us why she is no longer “taking any more punches.” The punches she’s referring to are those of her fellow castmates, Tamra and Vicki Gunvalson.
Gretchen reveals why the first ladies of Orange County will always hold their own among the many new faces of the Housewives franchise. “We are the original housewives, and ultimately people’s hearts are within the story lines of the people they’ve seen forever,” Gretchen says. “Each of us women on the show has a little bit more sophistication and class than maybe some of the other [cities] project.”
Interesting to hear Gretchen talking about class, considering all the explicit photos of her that leaked out this year. Regarding her ongoing tension with castmate Tamra, Gretchen says, “There might be some resolution but ultimately, I just say what needs to be said and I finally stand up for what’s right.” She continues, “I’m back and better this season and I’m not taking any more punches.”
And when asked about her new beau Slade Smiley, “Slade is a part of my life right now and I’m so grateful to have him in my life,” Gretchen says. “I truly feel like Jeff sent me Slade.”
Thoughts on the new season – It came off a bit boring to me, as well as fake and a tad bit sad. The ‘long awaited’ argument between Tamra and Gretchen didn’t redeem the episode for me. Watching the women go through their financial struggles was a bit sad to watch, and somewhat of a downer. Gretchen and Slade’s convenient new relationship? Not buying it, considering there were rumors she was suppose to appear on season 4 as Slade’s “girlfriend.” Arranging for all these ladies who hate each other to come together for dinner? Fake.
Perhaps it’s because I’m coming off the drama packed season of the Atlanta housewives, but this new season of the OC just lacked something. Maybe it’s because most of these ladies are not friends and don’t have the years of history the Altanta ladies have with one another. It’s going to become a tough task for Bravo to continue topping each shocking season of their Housewives’ franchise. It was however nice to see that some things, or people rather remain the same. How classy was it of Vicki to mention the fact that Jeana needed to borrow money from her, and her answer was a big NO! From watching the first episode, it’s easy to understand why Jeana is ready to move on. Quite frankly, I might be too.
TELL US – WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE NEW SEASON OF THE OC HOUSEWIVES?