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Real Housewives of Beverly Hills

Did the Real Housewives Bully Alexis Bellino — Or Was It Just Drama?

In Season 7 of The Real Housewives of Orange County, the ladies headed to Costa Rica for a fabulous vacation — that ended with Alexis Bellino in tears. The blonde Housewife accused her co-stars of bullying her during their “phony intervention.”

In case you need a refresher of what happened on the ladies’ Costa Rica trip, Tamra Barney called Alexis materialistic, while Gretchen Rossi said she was pretentious. Vicki Gunvalson offered some unsolicited financial advice, suggesting buying lots of cars wasn’t as smart as saving money. Tamra also told her frenemy to “Be a true person.”

Both Gretchen and Tamra took issue with Alexis calling their treatment of her “bullying” and author and reporter Emily Bazelon might agree.

In an op-ed for The New York Times, she argues, “The word is being overused — expanding, accordionlike, to encompass both appalling violence or harassment and a few mean words.”

She defines bullying as “a particular form of harmful aggression, linked to real psychological damage, both short and long term.”

Instead, Bazelon suggests terming these less damaging squabbles and fights as “drama.” She says, “Most teenagers can identify bullying, but they can also distinguish it from what they often call “drama,” which, the researchers Danah Boyd and Alice Marwick have shown, is an accurate and common name for the ordinary skirmishes that mark most children’s lives. In fact, it’s drama that’s common, and bullying, properly defined, that’s less so.”

It’s an interesting thought — and we’ve never shied away from calling what goes on during Real Housewives shows “drama.”

In the Season 8 promo video, Alexis is still upset over the ladies ganging up on her, saying she had to take Xanax for her anxiety afterwards. Would that qualify as psychological damage — or is Alexis just being dramatic?

Source: The New York Times