For former Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Taylor Armstrong, making the leap to The Real Housewives of Orange County wasn’t easy. “Coming into an existing cast meant I had to catch up on all the drama!” says Taylor, 52, who left RHOBH after Season 3 and starred in The Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip Ex-Wives Club last June. But it didn’t take long for her to make her mark on Season 17 of RHOC. “I might’ve gotten myself into a little trouble,” confesses the mom to 17-year-old Kennedy. (Dad is Taylor’s late ex, Russell Armstrong.) Here, the advocate for domestic violence victims talks to In Touch’s Amanda Champagne about family life, returning to the Housewives fray, and where she stands on the Brandi Glanville-versus-Caroline Manzo feud.
What Was it Like Joining RHOC?
TA: It’s been interesting. I’ve known Tamra [Judge] and Vicki [Gunvalson], and we did Ultimate Girls Trip together and had so much fun. The trouble with trouble is that it starts out as fun!
How Have You Changed Since RHOBH?
TA: The reason I wanted to come back is because my life is so different now. I want people to see there’s life after domestic abuse. [Taylor has said Russell was physically and verbally abusive during their marriage.] My life’s not perfect, but it’s like a phoenix rising from the ashes. I want survivors to see there is love after, and that you can look to the future as opposed to the past.
Did You Fit Right in With the RHOC Cast?
TA: I had to play catchup on why people are fighting over something that happened four years ago. As much as I want to have an opinion, I wasn’t there. The hardest part is figuring out, “Where do I land?”
How Do You Like Orange County?
TA: I lived down there off and on with my family for many years. I’m in Laguna Beach — how are you going to complain? I watch the sunset every day.
What’s it Like for Your Daughter Now That You’re Back on Reality TV?
TA: It’s been fun because some of the crew that worked on RHOBH when she was 4 are putting her mic on her now at 17. They’re like, “This is so weird.” She’s a junior in high school, which means she’s going to leave soon, and it’s heartbreaking. I’m trying to cherish the moment!
Has She Picked a College?
TA: She said Colorado, and I said, “That’s perfect. I can come visit you and go skiing,” and she’s like, “Never mind. I’m going to Miami.” As far away as possible! [Laughs] She’s a great kid.
Was Your Husband, John, Supportive of Your Return to TV?
TA: Oh, yeah. He knew what he was getting into when he met me. He lets me do whatever I want.
Do You Talk to Anyone from RHOBH?
TA: Kyle [Richards] and Kathy [Hilton] are the only ones left who I’m still close with.
Brandi Glanville Got into Trouble on RHUGT for Allegedly Kissing Caroline Manzo. Are You Team Brandi or Team Caroline?
TA: Brandi and I have a frenemy thing. She sent me a text today: “I just wanted to say thank you for kissing me back and not calling HR on me.” I said, “I’ll always kiss you back.” I don’t know what happened. But I’m a little jealous, because now she’s hitting on Caroline, and I thought we had a thing!
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