Tamra Judge Claims Ex-Husband Simon Barney’s Cancer Is Part Of Why She “Left” Real Housewives Of Orange County

WATCH WHAT HAPPENS LIVE WITH ANDY COHEN -- Episode 16132 -- Pictured: Tamra Judge -- (Photo by: Charles Sykes/Bravo)

It’s no secret that Bravo producers and network executives are trying hard to shake up the Real Housewives franchise. It all started with the demotion of Vicki Gunvalson for Season 14 of Real Housewives of Orange County. Then came the news that her and Tamra Judge were out for Season 15. Even on this season of Real Housewives of Atlanta, we’re seeing Nene Leakes get less and less screen time. Erika Jayne herself has said “everyone is replaceable.” The message is clear – all these women are dispensable to producers. To quote a line from Showgirls (yes, I am), producers know, “there’s always someone younger and hungrier coming down the stairs after you.”

As Reality Tea has previously reported, Tamra was offered three episodes to close out her story-arc on RHOC for Season 15. Since she wasn’t left with much of a choice to participate in the show, she declined the offer. She went out on a good note with Andy Cohen, doing an Instagram Live interview with him a few weeks back, where she joked about needing to study up on real estate again. But now Tamra is putting a new spin giving additional details on her departure.

In an exclusive interview with People, Tamra claims that she didn’t want to return for Season 15 to begin with because of her ex-husband, Simon Barney’s stage 3 cancer diagnosis. She tells People that in January producers did a “routine check-in” on her life to gage her storyline.

She shared, “They wanted to know what I’d be up to, and knowing Simon didn’t want me to talk about it, I told them I had a lot going on in my life that I wouldn’t be able to film. I said to them that it was going to be hard for me to film all the time, and that I didn’t know how much of a commitment I could put into filming.” This probably was a huge red flag to production since they want the dirt on everyone.


RELATED: Andy Cohen Confirms Tamra Judge Was Only Offered 3 Episodes “To Wrap Up Her Story” On Real Housewives Of Orange County; Hopes Tamra Will Return In Future


Tamra continued, “In my mind, I knew there was going to be a phone call during filming where someone needed me — where Simon was in the hospital, or one of my kids were upset — and I’d need to handle all that stuff, away from the cameras.”

She also shared that she wanted to tell production she didn’t want to return, “but this was my job for the past 12 years. I was helping support my family with that income. And God forbid, if Simon doesn’t make it? I just wasn’t strong enough to just walk away.” I bet. The money allows so many women to keep up with the appearances of the luxurious lifestyles depicted on the show!


RELATED: Simon Barney, Ex-Husband Of Tamra Judge, Has Stage 3 Throat Cancer


This all sounds like a legitimate reason to walk away, but we also know most women don’t get to walk away on their own terms. Plus, in the past, Tamra has had trouble sharing whether  she would leave or accept a demotion. Either way, it was time for Tamra to walk away.

I hope she does truly mend things with her daughter and that Simon beats this diagnosis. As a RHOC loyalist, I’ll miss seeing her. I do hope she returns someday, but like she said in the People interview, “Andy has said he thinks I’ll be back one day, but right now, I can’t even think about that. I’m thankful for my time on Bravo, I really am. I’ve loved doing the show and love the people there. But I just want to be with my family. Nothing else matters.”


RELATED: Previous Contracts Prevent Vicki Gunvalson & Tamra Judge From Appearing On Other Reality Shows For A Year


Let’s see where she’s at after Season 15.


[Photo Credit: Charles Sykes/Bravo ]