Most Real Housewives earn their spot on television by being causing controversy and stirring up the pot. Real Housewives of Dallas star Stephanie Hollman is not one of those Housewives. She has managed to be both entertaining and compelling by opening up about her past and just being her true self in front of the camera crew, something many other Housewives should take note of.
This season, Stephanie opened up about her suicide attempt in her twenties. Now she is discussing the impact that episode on her life, how the fans responded, and sharing even more about her life pre-Housewives and since the show started airing.
Now that Real Housewives of Dallas is in Season 3, Stephanie is sharing more than she ever has and this includes her recent interview for the Reality Life With Kate Casey podcast.
This season, Stephanie, her husband Travis Hollman moved into a massive mansion with a bathroom that I wouldn’t mind living in, but that is a far cry from Stephanie’s humble beginnings. These days she is all about being a Real Housewife, wife, and mom, but back in the day she worked two jobs.
Stephanie Hollman & Brandi Redmond Discuss Impact Of Real Housewives Of Dallas On Their Reputations & Their New Friendships With Kameron Westcott
Stephanie shared, “I worked with Head Start during the day and then I wanted to buy my own house and you don’t make a lot of money whenever you’re in the social service field. So I got an evening and weekend job at a homeless pregnancy shelter with a Catholic charity Madonna House. It was probably one of the saddest jobs I had because a lot of the women were homeless because of abuse or just bad situations.” She admitted, “It was hard, but it made my appreciate my pregnancies a lot more because I realized not everyone is pregnant and has this nine months to prepare and [have] a wonderful time.”
Life started to turn around for Stephanie when she met Travis. She told Kate Casey, ” I would go to Dallas every weekend and we were engaged six months later. It was a fast engagement, but I felt like we didn’t see each other all the time, so we actually really had to get to know each other because it was all emails, text messages, and phone calls. That was the only way we could spend time together was to communicate, so I think it was a good thing.”
Nowadays, Stephanie and Travis have a very comfortable life, but that wasn’t always the case. She shared, “You know, whenever I met Travis, he wasn’t doing what he is now. He didn’t have the locker company.” She added, “I feel like it was a very different life than what you see now, or even Season 1 of Real Housewives of Dallas. It was much, much nicer than I had ever know, but not to the point where I would have been extremely overwhelmed. ”
She admitted, “He drove a pickup truck and it was a very different life than I have now. At the same time, it was strange to not worry about paying your bills because there were times when I was by myself when I would pay my bills and not have much left to do anything else. It was strange to be able to go buy groceries and to be able to buy whatever you want.” Now, Stephanie can buy more than just the groceries of her choice.
Even so, Stephanie insists that she’s not just buying things simply because she and Travis have the funds. She told Kate, “I just don’t like to blow money on things that I don’t consider to be things that I need. Today I have a photo shoot, I’m doing my own hair and makeup because I don’t really think it’s so important to go and get it professionally done and spend $300.” A Real Housewife doing her own hair and makeup!? That’s not something you often, especially the plethora of glam squad scenes in the Real Housewives franchise.
Stephanie also revealed, “My grandfather still works at Walmart. I do make a paycheck with this show, but it’s nice because I was able to buy my grandfather a car. I have my grandparents’ house almost paid off. My family doesn’t have a lot of money so those are things that are kind of exciting for me. I could buy handbags and clothes or I can help my grandparents live a great life. They’re in their eighties and I would love for them to just not worry about working at Walmart.” She truly is the sweetheart of the RHOD cast.
Stephanie’s life changed a lot when she started dating Travis. Through him, Stephanie met the other love her life, her best friend and Real Housewives costar Brandi Redmond. Stephanie shared, “It was the easiest friendship. It was instantaneous. I can definitely say that I fell in love with her before I did with Travis.”
Technically, Stephanie moved to Dallas to be with Travis, but Brandi was clearly a major factor in the decision making. Stephanie explained, “I think the scariest thing, when you date someone in a different state, is wondering am I going to have a good support system? Because I did in Oklahoma. When Travis and I got engaged, I was so excited to move here because I had a girlfriend. I had a really good girlfriend.”
Aside from some fun times and national attention, being on Real Housewives has given Stephanie some greater fulfillment. She shared, “This year, I went in and I don’t know why, but I think you just start trusting the viewers as well and you trust the producers and you trust the process. I was able to talk about suicide and depression.” She later admitted, “For me, even this year, I felt like it was something I let go of and I feel like the weight of the world was lifted off my shoulders because I don’t feel like such a fraud.”
Looking back, Stephanie said, “I knew it was going to be a hard episode.” She continued, “It was very hard because I didn’t have a lot of time to wrap my head around it. I had a mental breakdown for a week and it was very hard, but I will say that especially sharing that part of my life was very fulfilling for me and helped me not feel so alone because a lot of people said they have dealt with the same stuff.”
Her openness had a profound effect on a Real Housewives of Dallas viewer. Stephanie revealed, “One person was contemplating suicide and decided not to do it and I have all these amazing stories that I was able to hear.”
The Real Housewives franchise is nothing short of a phenomenon. It is so easy to get caught up in these shows and the grand lives that some of these women appear to have, but there’s one thing that Stephanie wants the viewers to realize. She said, “I think the biggest thing is that I hope people know that we are just people like everyone else. I have the same insecurities, the same celebrations. We are all just the same and I hope that’s something people watch and realize. We are all just one hot mess just trying to do our best.” The word “real” is in the title for a reason. Sure, the drama can get hyped up for our entertainment, but they are all human beings when it comes down to it.
Tonight is an all new episode of The Real Housewives of Dallas. Join us in the comments to snark our way through it together!
TELL US- WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT STEPHANIE’S OPENNESS THIS SEASON? WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT EVERYTHING SHE WENT THROUGH BEFORE SHE MET TRAVIS?
[Photo Credit: Bravo]