Season 15 of The Real Housewives of Orange County has featured over-the-top drama, some hurt feelings and a lot of bombshells — and the final reunion episode was no different.
The second part of the season reunion aired Wednesday evening, with cast members Braunwyn Windham-Burke, Shannon Beador, Kelly Dodd, Elizabeth Lyn Vargas, Emily Simpson and Gina Kirschenheiter getting together to rehash some of the toughest moments of the previous year.
Among the emotionally-charged discussions, moderated by producer Andy Cohen, were Elizabeth's sexuality, the Black Lives Matter Movement and Braunwyn's relationships with husband Sean Burke and girlfriend Kris.
Read below for some of the episode's most dramatic moments.
Elizabeth Reveals She’s Bisexual
Late last year, Braunwyn came out as lesbian and opened up publicly about her relationship with her girlfriend. After coming out, she told Entertainment Tonight that the RHOC cast had been "pretty unsupportive" of her.
Her statements came up in the reunion and Braunwyn stood by her claims, saying there is no one on the cast that she "can talk to about LGBTQIA rights or Black Lives Matter."
"Have you ever asked me?" Elizabeth responded, moments before revealing that she identifies as bisexual.
"I'm bi, but whatever," she said, leading Braunwyn to admit that she suspected Elizabeth was gay.
"Have you always identified as bisexual?" Andy, 52, asked, to which Elizabeth said: "100 percent, but I don't practice it."
"Are you saying you don't practice it because you have a boyfriend right now?" he further clarified, referring to her boyfriend Jimmy.
"I just don't have any interest in meeting a new woman right now," she said.
Braunwyn Owns Up to Her “Worst” Mistake
At the close of part one of the reunion, Shannon shared that when her daughter Stella, now 16, was 14, Braunwyn told the teen, "Stella, there's a lot of bad drugs out there. If you want the good stuff, text me."
Picking up on the conversation in part two, Braunwyn, who is a recovering alcoholic, immediately apologized and said she didn't "remember saying it," before breaking down.
"I am so sorry that I did that," she told Shannon through tears. "I would never do that sober. It wasn't pretty and I did a lot of things I was ashamed of."
"I can believe I did it," she added. "I did terrible things, but I'm sorry. I'm so sorry."
Later, after the group had moved on and were preparing to take a break, Braunwyn broke down in tears again as she offered Shannon another apology.
"I think of all the things I've done that might be the worst," she said, as Shannon assured her that "it was a long time ago."
Kelly Says She’s Black — and Braunwyn Calls Her “Racist“
The reunion finale featured the culmination of a season's worth of political tension between Kelly and Braunwyn.
Kelly, 45, who is Mexican-American, faced controversy in October when she posted a photo wearing a hat that read "Drunk Wives Matter." At the time, social media commenters slammed the post as "insensitive" amid the ongoing protests against police brutality and the Black Lives Matter movement.
When the topic came up, Braunwyn accused Kelly of sending her "racist texts" while Emily called out Braunwyn for "criticizing all of us" for not being vocal about supporting social justice movements.
"I'm Black! How am I racist?" Kelly screamed at one point.
"Well, you wore a hat that said Drunk Lives Matter," Braunwyn replied.
"I'm Native American, I'm Black and I have Asian in me," Kelly later added, to which Andy asked, "But you don't identify as an African American?"
"I don't," Kelly said, as Andy added, "You have not walked through life as an African American."
"But I have as a Mexican," she replied.
"I think we've all been awarded the privileges of white people here," Braunwyn said. "I think you can be a minority and be racist, they're not mutually exclusive."
In a Wednesday Instagram post, Kelly referenced her claim that she's Black by posting the results of a DNA test.
"When I yelled 'I'm black' it was part of a much larger argument," she captioned the post. "No, I don't identify as African American but yes I'm part black (4%) and I've been discriminated against for my Mexican heritage (54% Spanish/Portuguese) and btw I'm also 28% Native American. I've experienced racism and it's a trigger for me when others who haven't try to weaponize racism against me."
Braunwyn Admits That She’s Never Been Attracted to Husband Sean
After fielding questions about her "confusing" romantic relationships all season, Braunwyn brought out her husband Sean during the reunion to clarify a few things.
Braunwyn admitted that she has "never been attracted to men physically," and that includes Sean, to whom she's been married for over 20 years.
"It breaks my heart to say that," she said, as Sean added that it "absolutely" breaks his heart as well.
"Of course we have an emotional connection — we're best friends and we enjoy each other that way, we really do. But that was a part of our relationship that was really hard and really challenging," he said.
"What was your reaction when Braunwyn finally said, 'Look, this is who I am'?" Andy asked, referring to Braunwyn coming out.
"In some ways it was a relief," he said. "It really was. Because the elephant in the room is, this isn't something we can't fix. She's attracted to women."
While discussing Braunwyn's girlfriend Kris, Sean said he had "mixed" feelings.
"It's hard, you know, after being with somebody for 25 years, of course it's hard to say, 'Oh my gosh how did this happen? How did I not see this?' But on the other hand, she's so much happier and we don't fight," he said.
Both said that while they have told the oldest of their seven kids about their new arrangement — remaining married while dating other people — the youngest do not yet know.
"I hope we can find a way to make this work so that we're all happy," Braunwyn said of the future. "I hope we can stay living together. I hope we can say being parents, co-parents."
"I hope that we can maintain a good decent structure for our kids so they can actually have something healthy and see something different," Sean added. "And what is the next thing? I'm not sure but right now this is better, so we're just taking those steps to see where it goes."
Elizabeth Opens Up More About Being Raised in a “Religious Cult“
Earlier this season, Elizabeth broke down after she revealed to Braunwyn that she grew up in a "religious cult" and was sexually abused by multiple men.
She further explained her upbringing in the reunion and shared that she has a weekly therapy appointment to process what she called "severe" post-traumatic stress disorder.
"Here's the truth, religious abuse is the worst kind of abuse because you trust adults," she said. "These adults f—– me up and I have to live with it."
"I didn't understand any of the situation until we actually were banished from the cult," she continued, noting that her grandmother was "the founder" of the cult and her father was a pastor in it.
When her family finally got out, Elizabeth said her mother got an 18-wheeler truck, threw their belongings in it and drove them herself to Washington State.
"There's so many bad things that happened that a normal person in Orange County would never have ever experienced," she explained. "And I like my cookie cutter perfection because it helps me not deal with the trauma that I've gone through. I like to go home and have my little cars and diamonds in my perfect little life, because I don't want people thinking I have issues. I want them just to think I'm normal."
"I like the vulnerable Elizabeth that's honest and talks about her life," Emily, 45, replied. "Because I didn't go through the trauma that you did, but I would always accept you and I love you when you're honest."
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