RHOC: Kelly Dodd Claims Braunwyn Windham-Burke Is 'a Fake Alcoholic' — 'Your Alcoholism Was All for a' StorylineJanuary 21, 2021
Braunwyn Windham-Burke has been transparent about her battle with alcoholism — but not everyone believes she's been honest about her sobriety journey.
On part one of the Real Housewives of Orange County reunion, Braunwyn's drinking was a hot topic of conversation among the women, including Kelly Dodd, who believed that her castmate was a "liar" and putting on a show for cameras throughout season 15.
For Braunwyn, 43, who revealed she was an alcoholic during the RHOC season 15 premiere, being on the show helped her sobriety.
"It made me accountable to a lot of people," she told host Andy Cohen on Wednesday's episode, which was filmed when Braunwyn was 10 months sober. "This is my third time trying to get sober."
Earlier in the season, the mother of seven — she shares Hazel, 2, Koa, 4, twins Caden and Curran, 7, Jacob, 15, Rowan, 18, and Bella, 20, with husband Sean Burke — admitted that she used her pregnancies to avoid her alcoholism.
On Wednesday, Emily Simpson pointed out that Braunwyn was not drinking during every nine-month period of her pregnancies and also while she breastfed her children. "To me, it looks like you've been able to easily transition between drinking, not drinking," Emily said.
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Now being sober, Braunwyn explained that "not drinking and being sober are two very different things," which made Elizabeth Lyn Vargas question: "What kind of sober are we talking about?"
Though she was in the hot seat, Braunwyn felt that she didn't "have to explain alcoholism," telling the women, "if you want, you can Google it."
She went on to explain that "Jacob was 7 when the twins were born and I nursed Jakey for a year. So that's six years where I wasn't pregnant and having children. When I went to rehab — because I did go to rehab in Miami — I was feeling good, I was sober and that's when we had the twins," said Braunwyn, who told Andy, "It wasn't as cut and dry as, 'Let's have a baby so I won't drink.' I was feeling good, I didn't want to deal with the reasons I drank. And that's the difference between being sober and not drinking."
But for Braunwyn — who admitted to being an "addict" who can "get addicted to shopping … sex … alcohol … social media … fame" — explaining her past wasn't enough to convince Kelly.
Calling for Braunwyn to "be honest real quick," Kelly claimed that her costar's alcoholism was scripted.
"Your alcoholism was all for a storyplan," Kelly told Braunwyn, who fired back: "F— you, Kelly! F— you. Do not go there."
RELATED: Braunwyn Windham-Burke Says RHOC Cast Has Been 'Pretty Unsupportive' of Her: 'That Was Shocking'
Though Braunwyn gave an example of her alcoholism and recalled being "drunk at 7" at BravoCon, Kelly still didn't believe her. "I've done that too. It doesn't make me an alcoholic."
"So wait, you think I'm a fake alcoholic?" Braunwyn asked Kelly, 45, directly.
"Yes, I do," she said to Braunwyn, who asked Kelly if she knew "how dangerous this is to everyone out there in recovery right now?"
Hearing Kelly's claim, Braunwyn said: "You are disgusting. This is vile even for you."
While Kelly said she was not "against" Braunwyn's sobriety, she did believe "things are contrived with her. Her agent told her to clean up her act," and pointed out that she went to early morning workout classes with Braunwyn and "never saw her hungover."
Coming to Braunwyn's defense was Gina Kirschenheiter, who attended a few Alcoholics Anonymous meetings with the fellow RHOC star.
"She gave me a lot of what was really happening and then in those meetings, you see real truths," Gina told Andy. "Nobody in there is in there pretending to be an alcoholic. … To be honest, though, Braunwyn, I've had a lot of people — even in my own personal life — question your sobriety, not on the show, whatever, and I always say, 'No, I'm telling you, she's an alcoholic.' "
RELATED: Braunwyn Windham-Burke Says She's 'a Big Ol' Lesbian' in RHOC Season Finale: 'This Is the Real Me'
Simpson also attended a meeting, where she "saw a very scaled-back, vulnerable Braunwyn."
Standing by her claim, Kelly said, "A lot of people go in those meetings because of court orders."
In the final moments of the episode, Shannon Beador also came forward with her own accusation, claiming that Braunwyn approached her then 14-year-old daughter Stella about drugs.
"I don't know whether I was going to say this today, but as a mother, I'm going to. When my daughter Stella was 14 years old, at her very first beach barbecue, you went up to her and said, 'Stella, if you want the good stuff, text me,' " claimed Shannon, who shares daughter Sophie, 19, and twins Stella and Adeline, 16, with ex-husband David Beador.
Though Braunwyn didn't say anything, footage showed her shaking her head and crying before part one of the reunion ended.
While the allegation is sure to unfold on part two of the reunion, a source close to production told PEOPLE ahead of Wednesday's episode that "Braunwyn did not offer Shannon's daughter cocaine."
"There is an allegation that Shannon makes during part one of the [season 15] reunion," said the source. "From the trailer, you can see that Braunwyn instantly took accountability for her actions."
Part two of The Real Housewives of Orange County season 15 reunion airs Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET on Bravo.
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