The biggest shock on this season’s kickoff of “The Real Housewives of Orange County,” was the exposure of Shannon Beador’s husband David’s affair.
The extremely personal therapy sessions that followed, added to the uncomfortable, voyeuristic peek into a crumbling marriage. Bravo pulled off the viewer shock factor, but at what price, and with how much background manipulation?
During last season’s reunion show, filmed in mid July of 2014, Shannon was gushing over the extra strong state of her marriage. She reiterated that position on a Watch What Happens Live appearance in early August, where she partially credited the reality show for pushing the couple to action, resulting in their marriage becoming “stronger than ever.” During the premiere week of RHOC a couple of weeks ago, Shannon revealed that she discovered the affair in April. She recently told US Weekly that the couple have remained in counseling ever since, adding, “If I had been an amazing wife, he wouldn’t have gone elsewhere.” A look back at her social media, carefully illustrates an ongoing image of a happy family, certainly understandable, especially if you’re saving a surprise struggle for premiere night.
During the very first episode, we watched a painful scene where David individually apologized to his obviously bruised daughters. Many viewers believed that putting the children in such a spotlight crossed the line. Shannon also reveals intimate details during episode interviews, describing their daughters’ navigation through the painful ordeal. Now that David has been publicly busted as a cheater, various reports are surfacing, with such exposed details further heightening the riskiness of the girls’ filmed involvement. A recent report on Radar Online contradicts their mother’s claim that their father willingly returned to his family, after only briefly leaving the family home. A source close to the couple commented,
“David had fallen hard for the woman and Shannon knew it. She had to beg him to come back home. It wasn’t David that wanted it. He was truly afraid that if he didn’t, Shannon would humiliate him on RHOC,” adding, “Shannon and David’s friends are predicting the marriage won’t last. The marriage is still on the rocks.”
One unanswered question asks, when did Bravo production step in to take over this seemingly choreographed reality? The couple’s therapy retreat, which was filmed in January, 9 months after the infidelity discovery, would certainly have taken some logistical preparation. Maybe that energy should have gone into protecting the Beador girls, from further potential pain.