Season 13 of The Real Housewives of Orange County premieres tonight, but this time around the cast is missing a few familiar faces. Vicky Gunvalson, Tamra Judge, Shannon Beador, and Kelly Dodd are back and bringing the drama (and tears) to Bravo cameras, and between the plastic surgery, drunken fights, and multiple divorces, it's hard to notice that some fan favorites are missing in action.
Meghan King Edmonds, Peggy Sulahian, and Lydia McLaughlin all surprisingly tossed their oranges earlier this year and it wasn't long before they were replaced by attorney Emily Simpson and Long Island transplant Gina Kirschenheiter, whose new tagline — "I speak the truth… even if it sounds funny when I say it" — is proof she'll fit right in. So, what happened to Meghan, Peggy, and Lydia?
Why did Meghan Edmonds leave RHOC?
Meghan shared the sad news of her exit on her blog this past January, and revealed she wanted to focus on her family. "Today is a bittersweet day for me. After three seasons of the rollercoaster that is The Real Housewives of Orange County, I’ve decided to hang up my O.C. Housewife hat," she wrote before opening up about the difficulties of filming post-pregnancy. "My mind was often foggy as I filmed but I put on a great face and did it because I loved being a Housewife and was so grateful for my opportunity. It was only after the season was filmed that I felt I was finally out of the newborn fog and I could look back on the past few months of Season 12 with clarity."
She also reassured fans that Bravo host Andy Cohen respected her decision to step away. "He was completely understanding," Meghan added. "In fact, all of production has been nothing but understanding and supportive of me and my decisions every step of the way." Now that she is done filming in the O.C., Meghan and her husband Jim Edmonds are headed back to the Midwest, along with their kid, Aspen, 19 months, and twin boys Hayes and Hart, who were just born in June.
"I have made soul sisters in Shannon Beador and Tamra Judge and that can't be lost," she gushed. "They have touched my heart and I would do anything for them and I know they feel the same way about me — what a gift to have found that on RHOC!"
What happened with Lydia and Peggy?
Lydia, on the other hand, revealed she could only handle one season of the reality show at a time — and we don't blame her. "I need a break! There is a lot of good that comes from the show, but also a lot of negativity," she also wrote on her personal blog. "After a family vote, it was unanimous that I should take a break. Sometimes the people who love us the most see things even we don’t see. I trust my path and I’m excited for what the future holds.”
Meanwhile, Peggy felt she accomplished more than enough during her short-lived stint on RHOC, including being the first Armenian-American housewife on the network. "While I faced and conquered many challenges, I’m grateful for the opportunity to share my story and spread awareness of breast cancer," Peggy explained. "Dealing with the disease and the passing of my father challenged me to reassess and reflect on my life, and I’ve realized what’s most important is leading a healthy and happy life, surrounded by people who care and love you. At this point, moving on seemed like the right thing to do. A few new ventures have availed themselves, and I look forward to sharing them with you soon!"
We can't wait to see what these ladies do next!