The Real Housewives of Orange County returns for season 14, and Emily Simpson is back as one of the reality show’s stars. Although RHOC teases that much of Emily’s story this season will focus on her status as a “single mom” of three while her husband Shane studies for the California Bar exam, ahead of the season 14 premiere, attention has been on changes to her physical appearance.
Although her weight gain is no one’s business but her own, Emily’s celebrity status and regular presence on social media mean that it was noticed by fans and followers. She acknowledged her body’s change, writing on Instagram: “I’ve gained about 15-20 pounds over the past 9 months because I quit working out with my trainer regularly and I basically stopped moving period. My arthritis was bothering me so much and I was in so much pain, I became depressed and stopped moving at all. However, the extra weight has exacerbated my arthritis making it worst and now I’m in even MORE pain, and my clothes don’t fit. I’ve done more damage to myself by NOT moving.” The photo she posted was a selfie in the gym, where she said she was “going to stick it out today. I’m going to lift some weights. Im going to come back tomorrow morning and work out with my trainer. I’m going to walk more and I’m going to eat healthier because I want to be pain free. I want to run and play with my kids and I want my pants to fit again!”
Since opening up about her struggle on Instagram, Simpson has continued to let her over 200,000 followers in on her fitness journey, sharing photos and videos of her gym progress, complete with candid captions about her struggles overcoming arthritis to reach her fitness goals. Three days before the premiere, she posted a thank you to her trainer for motivating her to stay active and make healthy choices.
Even though Simpson has been public as she works through her arthritis to get active and lose weight, she has still been targeted by critics who recently accused her promotional photo for The Real Housewives of Orange County season 14 of being photoshopped to make Simpson look thinner than she is. She addressed the accusation on Instagram with a personal photo taken on the day of the promo shoot. In the caption, she wrote “For you assholes out there who feel the need to make derogatory comments on my figure ‘photoshopped to look like 50 pounds were taken off’ in reference to the Season 14 #rhoc promo pic…. here’s the raw, untouched photo taken with my iPhone by my makeup artist. Looks exactly the same to me! This dress is a size Medium.”
She then took the opportunity to stand up against body-shamers, writing “I’m not sure if you all know this but I’m a woman, I have curves and they are frikin’ hot and amazing …but I’m also a human and I have feelings too. Why so many of you feel the need to say downright mean, cruel and vicious things.. I truly will never understand it. I hope you find some happiness and peace someday so that attacking someone’s looks and being so vicious doesn’t come so naturally to you.”
Tune in to new episodes of The Real Housewives of Orange County season 14, Tuesday nights at 9/8c on Bravo.