The hotly anticipated Real Housewives of Beverly Hills reunion special kicked off Wednesday, and no subject went unaddressed. However, a topic of conversation that dominated the evening was Erika Jayne's high-profile legal and marital dramas.
The first part of the four-part reunion began with some tension being addressed as host Andy Cohen spoke with the housewives -- including Kyle Richards, who revealed that Jayne is no longer speaking to her.
Cohen spoke one-on-one with Jayne as well, to see how she was feeling ahead of the actual reunion, and she seemed resigned to addressing all of her issues with her castmates.
"I’m looking forward to closing this chapter and moving on," Jayne explained, before adding the caveat that, due to the legal nature of her various controversies, she may have to limit what she discusses.
"I’m happy to say everything that I can say," she shared. "Please understand there are some things I cannot answer, but I will do my best to give every part of the story that I can."
So, with that limitation in mind, Jayne said she also wants to address some of the misconceptions people have about her, and her desire to make things right in the wake of multiple lawsuits against her and her estranged husband, Tom Girardi.
"You know, there’s a lot of talk about me being cold, and a lot of talk about me not having empathy and sympathy. The truth is, I do," Jayne said. "But I’m in an almost impossible situation. And anyone that has been wronged, I want them to be made whole."
"You’re talking about the victims of Tom’s?" Cohen asked.
"Yeah, I’m talking about the alleged victims of all of Tom’s alleged misdoings," she clarified. "And it’s important that people hear that from me."
Jayne also opened up about watching the season, and admitted it was "really, really hard" to watch her real-life troubles play out on screen, and to see how her castmates responded to her problems.
When asked to recount her feelings while watching the other housewives' reactions to her divorce and various legal scandals, Jayne said, "Disappointment. Anger. Sadness. And then, some hope. And some love. And some support."
As for her decision to stay on RHOBH while in the midst of her split and various lawsuits and documentaries and allegations, Jayne admitted that her lawyers advised her to quit the show, and warned her, that everything she said could be "parsed, twisted, turned and yes, possibly used against you."
But she refused to quit, "Because I have nothing to hide."
"I'm not a quitter, and I wanted to honor my commitment," Jayne said. "And I wasn’t going to run away from what's coming at me."
When Cohen asked about the fan reactions to her scandals and the vocal viewers who have taken to social media to demand that Jayne be fired from the show, Jayne said she strongly disagreed.
"Why should I be fired? Why we are presuming that I’ve done something? Why aren’t we letting the legal process play out?" Jayne argued. "You’ve heard one side, and a lot of bulls**t on that side. Give me a chance to defend myself. Watch me. I’m ready for the challenge. Watch me do it."
Jayne also revealed that the Bravo series is her primary source of income since filing for divorce from Girardi in Nov. 2020.
"Yeah, unfortunately, it is. You know, that is more now of a consideration," she said. "Back then, when we were shooting the show, I was literally trying to survive. So now that we're here, yes — that has come more into consideration."
While addressing their split, Jayne claimed once again that she'd found out Girardi had been cheating on her, an allegation she had brought to light earlier in the season. In the episode, Jayne claimed that she realized that her estranged husband had been unfaithful following his 2018 car accident.
"Why not leave him sooner if he was cheating on you?" Cohen asked.
"The cheating is a part of it. There’s so much more there," Jayne said. "And I said to Tom, 'If you are in love with someone else, divorce me and go be with her.'"
According to Jayne, Girardi apparently had no response.
When asked if she's ever stepped out on Girardi during their marriage, the special ended, leaving off on a dramatic pause as a cliffhanger for next week's part 2.
For more on Jayne's high-profile legal woes, see the video below.