Why Real Housewives Of Orange County’s Emily Simpson Believes Her Time On The Show Has Helped Her Marriage

screenshot of Emily Simpson and her husband from The Real Housewives of Orange County
(Image credit: Bravo)

Before all these hefty legal issues and cult church allegations of the quote-unquote “new era” of the Real Housewives franchise – entertaining as it is to now watch – the shows thrived off just relationships in flux for many years. Proper franchise drama entails their relationships with their romantic partners. That’s the brick-and-mortar. And surprisingly, after four seasons under her belt, The Real Housewives of Orange County’s Emily Simpson believes her time on the show has actually helped her marriage.

In seasons past, fans would not have anticipated that Emily Simpson and Shane, her husband of 11 years, would make for a lasting marriage in the long term. They were in fact on the brink of divorce at several points, as they openly argued about Shane’s blasé personality and lack of presence at home. Things have seemed to mellow out, though, ever since the scary portrayal of his live hospitalization for COVID-19 last season. Speaking to Entertainment Tonight, The Real Housewives of Orange County alum shared how she appreciated the show’s ability to keep them accountable, saying:

I feel like it was a tool that actually helped our relationship and helped us move forward. Being able to look at your relationship and think, 'Wow, that's not great. I don't want to talk like that, or look like that...' and I think he had some self awareness of how he looked or sounded. And neither one of us wanted to be like that, we wanted to be happy and respectful to each other, and good role models for our children. I think we took a look at ourselves and our relationship and we both changed, and met in the middle, and that middle is this great play where we're just happy and kind to each other.

Truth be told, Emily Simpson’s marriage is one of the few and far between ones that have survived reality TV scrutiny so far. The Real Housewives franchise, in particular, is said to curse castmates (like Erika Jayne) with divorces, especially if a vow renewal ever occurs.

Just among the Orange County cast alone, past and present, there have been many who have fallen victim to the supposed “curse” – but in all actuality, the show was just likely highlighting problems that were already occurring or would probably eventually happen. OC’s Gina Kirschenheiter and her ex-husband, Matthew, ended things after a domestic violence incident in 2019. Last year, Braunwyn Windham-Burke and her husband Sean finally ended their own very confusing arrangement, not long after she was fired from the show.

On the currently airing season of the show, newcomer Noella Bergener has likewise been another statistic for the curse. Her then-husband famously cut off finances to her and their toddler son and served her divorce papers from Puerto Rico amidst filming. The freshman star has since been dealing with the fallout of the situation but also getting into feuds with several of her co-stars, to include returning vet Heather Dubrow and other newbie Jen Armstrong.

About all the drama, Emily Simpson weighed in with her own two cents. She told ET that Noella Bergener “contradicts herself a lot” and has confusing “fan girl” energy toward Heather Dubrow. Concerning her fraught friendship with Shannon Beador, who has her own problems as well with Dubrow, Simpson said that the recent cast trip to Cabo was a “game changer” for them as they were able to let bygones be bygones – for now.

As I like to say, all’s fair in love and war and on the Real Housewives. Emily Simpson’s marriage has managed to come out the other side of turmoil relatively unscathed, as of right now. You can check out all of the drama for yourself when The Real Housewives of Orange County airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET on Bravo. You can check out CInemaBlend's 2022 TV schedule for info on other shows dropping this year, too.

Lauren Vanderveen
Movies and TV News Writer

Freelance writer. Favs: film history, reality TV, astronomy, French fries.