During a therapy session with her son, Ryan Vieth, Tamra Judge opened up about the guilt she still carries about his childhood
Tamra Judge may have spent the entire season stirring the pot among her Real Housewives of Orange County cast-mates — especially Kelly Dodd and Braunwyn Windham-Burke — but during this week’s episode, she dove headfirst into her therapy session with her 33-year-old son, Ryan Vieth.
And it was the last thing RHOC viewers wanted to watch.
At the suggestion of his therapist, Ryan brought Tamra along to one of his therapy sessions, during which Tamra admitted that she noticed “swings of emotions coming through [Ryan], like highs and lows. I feel like he’s at a point in his life where he’s just numb to life.” When asked why she thinks Ryan’s had mood swings, Tamra said he gets “overloaded with things.” “He just shuts down, and I feel like he’s at that point in his life where he’s not happy; and I want to see him happy,” she added.
Tamra then reveals, tissues clutched in her hand, that she still feels guilty that she got pregnant with Ryan when she was 17 and wasn’t able to give him the comfortable life her other children would later have.
“Ryan and I were alone, just the two of us, for 13 years,” she said. “I carry guilt because I feel like I let him down. I look at my kids now, and the opportunities they have. I’ve got two kids in college now. [Ryan] ran out of the house when he was 18 because he couldn’t stand his stepdad.”
And Tamra wasn’t wrong. Ryan, in a talking head, then opened up, revealing he has a lot of resentment toward his siblings.
“Growing up, I didn’t have the worst life, but the older I get, the more I see how my brother, my sisters are growing up. I think a little bit of me inside is a little angry about it,” he said.
“I can look at my son’s eyes and see he’s just not himself,” Tamra later said to the camera. “He just wants to protect this little girl so much, like just smother her, and he doesn’t let other people in. He isolates himself with Ava, and it’s starting to concern me.”
In an after-show interview, Tamra continued to open up about Ryan and the guilt she continues to feel.
“In his own mind, he thinks he’s a loser, he’s not worth anything, nobody likes him,” she said. “It’s a really dark place to be. I think, for me, I have a lot of guilt. People are like, ‘Don’t enable him!’, just because it’s the guilt that I have, and it just brings up so many emotions.”
Tamra then suggests Ryan’s behavior and the way he feels could have something to do with the fact that he, for the most part, grew up on camera, unlike his siblings.
“There’s something to be said not having my kids on this show all this time,” she says. And in a surprising move, Gina Kirschenheiter then defended Ryan in the same after-show interview, saying that he gets a “bad rap.”
“They react to the cameras, they react to things, and they respond to things differently, and they are going through a hard time,” Gina said of kids on reality shows. “I think [Ryan] gets a bad rap. I don’t know Ryan very well, but I have hung out with him a handful of times, and he’s a really nice, sweet, polite guy. Very good dad.”
“He’s so much better now,” Tamra adds, to which a producer asks, “As a result of therapy?” “Yeah,” she responds.
Viewers, for the most part, weren’t having any of it — and for good reason. Remember when Ryan made headlines in August for allegedly sending threatening texts to his ex, Sarah? According to reports, Sarah posted and then deleted text messages she claimed were from Ryan that read “go kill yourself,” followed by a photo of a bullet, and the words, “This one is for you.” Ryan and Sarah share a daughter, Eva, who is now 4 years old.
Then, we watched Ryan, a “fanatic Trump supporter,” butt heads with his brother, Spencer Barney, due to Ryan’s political beliefs.
We can’t blame viewers for refusing to sympathize with Ryan. So, if there’s any takeaway from this episode, it’s that Bravo should take this as a hint to pull any future Ryan storylines from the show. Because if Tamra is admitting, in a way, that it’s for the best to keep her children off the show, then Ryan should do just that and continue working on himself. The show — and viewer feedback — isn’t going to help.
This article was originally published on