Taylor Armstrong Talks About Her ‘Huge’ Evolution Since Leaving ‘RHOBH’

Since she left “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” in 2013, Taylor Armstrong said she’s learned how strong she really is.

Prior to her departure, Armstrong’s conjugal difficulties were depicted (and discussed) on camera† Armstrong claims her ex-husband, Russell Armstrong, was physically and emotionally abusive to her.

Armstrong filed for divorce from Armstrong in July 2011. A month later, Russell asked died by suicide, with season 2 airing weeks after Russell’s death. She left the show after season 3 and moved to Vail to “let go of what had happened and try to find (herself) again,” she shared. Bravo

Camille Grammer and Taylor Armstrong in

Camille Grammer and Taylor Armstrong in

After nearly 10 years without the cameras, Armstrong now returns in “The Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip: Ex-Wives Club,” which premiered on Peacock on June 23.

Armstrong shines next to her”RHOBH” enemy, Brandi GlanvilleTamra Judge and Vicki Gunvalson of “RHOC;” Dorinda Medley and Jill Zarin of “RHONY;” Phaedra Parks and Eva Marcille from “RHOA.”

The cast, which Cohen called his “twisted fantasy”all gathered for a week last fall at Medley’s Bluestone Manor in Massachusetts, setting the stage for a drama-filled series for viewers to watch.

TODAY chatted with Armstrong to hear how she’s evolved since viewers last saw her and all about ‘RHUGT 2’.

Armstrong’s evolution has been ‘huge’ since her time on ‘RHOBH’

Armstrong said she has changed since viewers last saw her on RHOBH. She has become an advocate for survivors of domestic violence, telling TODAY that she found “so much strength” for herself and her now teenage daughter Kennedy.

“A friend of mine said a long time ago, ‘You’re going to have to put on your big girl pants and get through this, because you’re the only one who can do it for you and Kennedy. I didn’t know if I could endure everything I’d been through. Now that I’ve done that, I know I had strength in me that I never realized I had and in other difficult times in my life I can now draw on that strength and know I’ll get through it.” said Armstrong.

Armstrong described her experience in the memoir Hiding From Reality. She remarried in 2020.

She Compares Dorinda Medley On ‘RHUGT 2’ To A ‘Camp Director’

Armstrong didn’t know many of her “RHUGT 2” co-stars before the filming, including host Medley. She admitted she “didn’t know what to expect” from the RHONY star.

“I didn’t know if she was going to be a real New York socialite or if she was going to be cool and laid back. She is a great mix of both. She is a really wonderful hostess, and she was also the camp director. I mean, at one point she had a whistle! She certainly kept us on track and kept us entertained, but was also just a lot of fun to be around. So she’s a perfect mix of the two,” Armstrong said.

Armstrong said the season has “a lot of drama, but also a lot of fun,” noting that “the parts that are really special to me are some of the things we did, like team building activities.”

Taylor Armstrong in

Taylor Armstrong in

Armstrong spars with Glanville throughout the series

When Cohen called Armstrong to ask her to join the cast, she said she was excited — until Cohen asked her if she’d be willing to film with Glanville, her one-time nemesis on “RHOBH.” Armstrong said, “I was like, Andy Cohen, I should have known you had something up your sleeve?”

As she prepared to go to Bluestone Manor, Armstrong was “very nervous” to see Glanville because she “wasn’t sure which way she was going.

“No one can push my buttons like Brandi,” she said. “For some reason, that girl ignites a fire in me that no one else on this planet can do. I think viewers will enjoy the fact that we’re back together, but there are definitely some sparks.”

Armstrong said she and Glanville are “good” today, comparing them to a “family that fights.” She said the original six “RHOBH” ladies (Armstrong, Camille Grammer, Adrienne Maloof, Kim Richards, Kyle Richards and Lisa Vanderpump) plus Glanville “survived a lot together as a cast”, creating a “band that will always be there.” “. †

Taylor Armstrong and Eva Marcille on

Taylor Armstrong and Eva Marcille on

she talks about That meme

In a clip released before the premiereGlanville refers in her confessional to the meme template with Armstrong appearing to yell at a cat sitting at a table. In the scene, Glanville says, “Taylor is literally yelling at me, but all I can think about is that stupid cat meme.”

Armstrong told TODAY that when she saw the clip, she was “impressed” by Glanville’s characterization of the moment, saying she was aware of the meme’s enduring image. On Halloween in 2019, she ran into someone dressed as Smudge, the cat from the meme, and posted a photo of the meeting.

Armstrong gives her take on the Vicki vs. Dorinda drama

A broken bond between two ladies from ‘RHUGT 2’? The relationship between Gunvalson and Medley.

Drama boiled over as the press kicked in for ‘RHUGT 2’, as Gunvalson said on a… Bravo Instagram Live that she would be “miserable” living in Bluestone Manor full time because it is “old” and in a rural area.

Medley responded, Calling Gunvalson in an Instagram post and says on her podcast that Gunvalson has no “taste”† She said, “You have to have a level of taste to understand a house like Bluestone Manor.”

Gunvalson responded in an Instagram commentsaying Medley is “the nasty one” and reiterating that the experience was “miserable” at Bluestone Manor.

Medley then said she was ignoring “hundreds of lyrics” by Gunvalsonand Gunvalson responded in an Instagram comment, saying that: Medley is an ‘absolute liar’.

Armstrong told TODAY she was “pitying Vicki” because she was a… divorce from ex-fiancée Steve Lodge while the show was filming.

“On ‘Ultimate Girls Trip’ it was a different side of Vicki, which was a shame,” she said.

Armstrong answers rapid-fire questions about ‘RHUGT 2’ and what’s to come

Armstrong said what viewers should know when the show premieres.

  • Most likely cause of the drama: Glanville

  • Most likely to make the group laugh: parks

  • Most likely touting their own brand: Zarin. “Every time I turned around, Jill had some kind of product,” Armstrong explained.

  • Best outfits during the week: parks

  • Who else would want to take them out of the cast of ‘RHOBH’: Kyle Richards, who played on the first ‘RHUGT!’ She explained, I always have a great time with Kyle. There is so much behind the scenes that people in Beverly Hills have never seen. Kyle and I lived only a few blocks away from each other. Portia (Umansky, Kyle’s daughter) and Kennedy would spend the night together all the time, and I would be at Kyle’s house. We’ve laughed so much in our history as friends, and she would have been a lot of fun to have on a trip,” Armstrong explained.

  • Who spills the most tea: Gunvalson. Armstrong explained: “Vicki and I had lunch before our trip. She said, “I don’t want to talk about Steve (Lodge, Gunvalson’s ex-fiancée).” I’m like, ‘I’m good at that.’ Then the first thing she does is, we’re barely inside, and she’s already telling a story that she and Steve broke up and they haven’t had sex in 13 months. I’m like, didn’t we just have lunch and talk about not talking about Steve? I was like, Vicki, Vicki, Vicki.”

  • Who she had the most fun with: Marcel and Parks. Armstrong explained, “they were probably the best part of my vacation.”

  • Who is the best team player: herself

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