For anyone out there who is slightly obsessed with the magnificent, yet bizarre world of reality television, the name Vicki Gunvalson practically signifies royalty. When it comes to women of drama, Vicki is the OG, the master, and the muse of the reality world all wrapped into one spunky human being. Gunvalson is one of the brazen, outspoken housewives who offer viewers a glimpse into their lavish Orange County lives.
The Bravo television station tapped into viewers' curiosity when they launched the zany idea of gathering raunchy, well to do ladies, throwing them together in one social group and watching the sparks (and sometimes glassware) fly. From California to New York, Atlanta to New Jersey, the Real Housewives entertain fans, and sometimes concern them, with their everyday chaos.
Plenty of ladies have come in and out of the series, but very few have stayed the entire course. Vicki Gunvalson is one of the only housewives to start out with the franchise, never sitting a season out. This, along with her big and wild personality, makes her the ultimate OG housewife.
And sure, Vicki puts the vast majority of her life on display for the world to see, but here are 20 things that the O.C. star doesn't share with her viewers.
20 She Has Been Married Twice
Vicki is one of those ladies who believes in forever and firmly believes in love and marriage.
No matter how many times her romances have flopped, she seems to somehow pick herself up by her bootstraps and try again with a new man.
Our Vicki has strolled down the aisle on several occasions. In her younger years, she was married to Donn Michael J. Wolfsmith from 1983-1991. Together they had two children, Michael and Brianna. Gunvalson divorced her first husband and then married Donn Gunvalson and was with him from 1994-2014. She seems to be pretty smitten with her newest partner, so who knows. Perhaps the third time will be the charm.
19 She Still Believes In Love
Even with two marriages under her belt, as well as a high profile nightmare of a relationship with her former boyfriend Brooks Ayers, Vicki still believes in love, romance, and marriage. One thing we did see a lot of in recent seasons of her show was her hinting to her current man, Steve Lodge, that she would like to marry again. Yep. Vicki is ready to wear the band again if only her boyfriend would ask. As of now, Lodge seems to be biding his time; he too has been hitched before.
Ms. Vicki has also said that she needs her love tank filled all of the time. She needs a certain kind of "attention" four times a day to feel satisfied.
18 Vicki Blames Her Hit Show For Her Second Divorce
Vicki and her second husband Donn called it quits back in 2014, and Gunvalson blames her hit reality show for the demise of her relationship.
Vicki has been quick to point out that some great opportunities have stemmed from her stint on the favorite reality show, but there have also been some true pitfalls, one being the break up of her marriage.
She revealed in one interview that she does often wonder where she and Donn would be now had they not done the show. She also recognizes that doing a show like The Real Housewives put far too much pressure on an already struggling marriage.
17 She May Become A Stepmother Soon
Vicki has two grown children from her first marriage, and we think it is safe to say that Gunvalson's days of carrying babies are long gone (she is now a grandmother to her daughter Brianna's two young sons). So while Vicki won't be having any babies with her current boyfriend Steve, she might still be adding more kids to her family. Should she and Steve Lodge ever decide to tie the knot, Vicki would become a step-mother to his children.
Steve has two grown children, Amanda and James, from his first marriage to Karla Lodge. If they marry, this family might look with an O.C. Brady Bunch!
16 Her Two Children Lost A Sibling
Vicki's two children, Michael and Brianna, are full siblings, and while they never gained another brother or sister through their mother, they did score siblings through their biological father.
Their estranged dad went on to marry again, and Brianna and Michael ended up with a fourteen-year-old half brother named Parker.
Not much is known regarding Vicki's grown children's relationship with their half-brother, but unfortunately, it was a relationship that won't be able to grow any further. Sadly, Parker passed away several years ago in a tragic accident that rocked the entire extended family. Even Vicki offered her thoughts and condolences on her blog.
15 She Makes Mad Dough
Vicki started her insurance company out of her home around the same time that The Real Housewives of The O.C. was ramping up. Today that business is booming and it has made Vicki some serious bank. Aside from being the boss lady at her insurance company, she also makes serious cash for starring on her hit reality show and has penned two books thus far.
Vicki Gunvalson currently has an estimated net worth of a whopping seven million dollars. This is not any major surprise considering she pulls in about half a million dollars for every season of The Real Housewives that she films. Go on with your bad self Vicki!
14 Her Grandkids Are NOT To Call Her Nana
We first met Vicki's daughter Brianna when she was not much more than a child herself. Over a decade later, Brianna is a full grown woman with a job in the medical field, a husband, and two young sons.
Bri's kids are Vicki's only grandchildren, and by all accounts, the reality star adores her growing family.
While she would move mountains for her children and her grandkids, she has one hard line in the sand and that is the youngsters are NOT to call Vicki Grandma, Nana, or anything of that sort. Vicki is a Glam-ma, which is far snazzier than a Grandmother, and she likes to be addressed as such.
13 There Are Murmurings That Vicki Is Leaving The Show
We can't imagine a season of The Real Housewives of Orange County without Vicki Gunvalson. She has been with the series from the very get-go and has given viewers some of the most memorable and crazy moments to date. This past year there were some murmurings that Vicki might not be returning to the television screen, and that had fans wondering what was up.
Last season's finale show gave us big time fireworks between Gunvalson and castmate Kelly Dodd. Vicki made some accusatory comments that left Dodds claiming she would not return if Gunvalson were not reprimanded in some way. We will have to stay tuned to see if both housewives return next season or only one of the gals makes their comeback.
12 She Makes More Than The Other Housewives
When you are the ultimate OG housewife, you can expect greater perks and paychecks compared to some of your counterparts.
Vicki supposedly makes a lot more money than some of her castmates, which makes sense considering how long she has been a part of the franchise.
While some sources claim that Gunvalson rakes in half a million dollars per season of The Real Housewives of Orange County, other sources state that she perhaps made as much as $750,000 for filming the 2017 season! For comparison's sake, Vicki's sometimes bestie and sometimes enemy co-star Tamra Judge makes about $150,000 less than her.
11 She Was Once A Midwestern Mama
When Vicki Gunvalson was married the first time around, she and her then-husband Michael settled down in Midwestern Wisconsin to start their family. Vicki was in her early twenties when she first decided that housewife living was for her. That first marriage didn't last of course, and neither did Vicki's midwestern lodgings. She took her subsequent marriage out west and settled in sunny California.
Now that we have seen this California-loving mama in action for so many years, we can not imagine her being in any other state. She found the place that she was meant to be in.
10 She Was A Young Bride
Vicki was only 21 years old when she married her first husband Michael J. Wolfsmith.
Together the pair had two children at a very young age, but the couple had far too many deep issues to work out and they couldn't make the union last.
Vicki has not had very kind things to say about her first husband. She has made several public claims that Wolfsmith had some issues with the bottle and didn't treat Vicki as she should be treated. She also told reporters that her then-husband was untrustworthy many times during their relationship. By all accounts, Vicki considers that period in her life as the hardest of times.
9 She Has Weathered Some Health Issues In Recent Years
Gunvalson has seen her fair share of health scares over the last few years. Viewers saw her battle a spike in blood pressure during one girls' trip to Iceland. She was also in an ATV accident that was caught on camera. Then fans witnessed her bout of severe sweating and other worrisome symptoms while vacationing with the other housewives in Jamaica.
Vicki also recently underwent a procedure to have a blockage cleared from her inner ear caused by the cholesteatoma she had removed. It seems like when it comes to health, Vicki cannot seem to catch a break.
8 Not All Of Her Businesses Have Fared Well
Vicki's insurance company, Coto Insurance and Financial Service, has done incredibly well for her over the years, but other companies that Vicki has proudly put her name to have not fared in the same way.
Wines by Wives and Vicki's Vodkas were major flops because of unsuccessful business partnerships.
These business ideas that quickly went south prove that just putting your name to a product won't guarantee that your business will be a booming success. It seems that as of late, Vicki is sticking to what she knows, reality television, and selling insurance plans.
7 Her Current Man Has A Rap Sheet
Vicki's current boyfriend is a former paratrooper and police officer with a fascinating past. Lodge has been accused of misconduct two times while serving on the police force. He was also served with a restraining order in 2012 for having issues with a man who might have gotten involved with his ex-wife. He was also later sued for using a name that wasn't his on his ballot for Anaheim City Council. Even though Steve has a colorful past, Vicki continues to love and support her man all while patiently awaiting him to put a ring on it. Vicki does not judge a person by their history.
6 Her Housewives Appearance Happened By Chance
It was Vicki's son who answered the casting call for a show that was meant to follow around young adults living privileged lives.
When show producers came out to meet Michael and his friends, it was Vicki and her pals who stole the show and ended up landing a hit reality gig.
Because of that chance meeting, show writers and producers devised a plan to showcase the wives and mothers in the city, not the children, and that brainchild turned out to be reality television gold. The idea was original and captivating and before long had grown into several spinoffs of the O.C. show. Thank goodness Michael had the good sense to follow up on this one particular lead.
5 Her Ex-Boyfriend Brooks Recently Married
Vicki almost lost everything and everyone when she chose to devote herself to devious Brooks Ayers several years ago fully. Thankfully, that relationship never made it to the altar and Vicki moved on to what appears to be greener pastures. Brooks did say I do recently, but it wasn't to Vicki.
Brooks tied the knot with Christy Lindeman, his girlfriend of roughly a year and we don't think that Vicki or any of the housewives sent a wedding gift to the happy couple. Let's say that Ayers is not a favorite among the housewives after he faked a cancer scare and managed to pit friends and family against one another.
4 Her Children Have No Relationship With Their Father
Vicki's kids were pretty young when Vicki and her first husband Michael divorced. By all accounts, Michael Junior and Brianna's dad wasn't exactly a stand-up fellow, and when Vicki married Donn, he completely took on that role of doting dad.
It was Donn who helped Vicki raise the kids and get them through to adulthood, not their biological dad.
These days Brianna and Michael Jr. have no relationship whatsoever with their biological dad, and neither does their mother. Son Michael referred to his dad as "a loser" who hasn’t been a part of our lives for years.” Sometimes severing toxic ties are what is best for everyone.
3 She Regrets Her Decision To Divorce Donn
Vicki revealed to Bravo TV's host and housewives show producer Andy Cohen that she profoundly regrets divorcing her second husband, Donn. Of Donn, Vicki has said that he is a great man and was a great husband and father to her kids. Donn still maintains a positive relationship with Vicki's daughter Brianna and even visited her and her sons over the 4th of July.
Vicki wasn't so thrilled at seeing the father-daughter reunion all over social media, but we have to believe that she is actually relieved that her ex-husband continues to be supportive of her children and her grandchildren. After all, he was a significant part of their lives for years.
2 Vicki Even Helped Throw Her Pal His Baby Shower
Andy Cohen isn't a housewife, but he is a significant part of the franchise, hosting the interviews, reunions and producing the mega project. Many of the housewives, Vicki included, consider Cohen to be a close friend and almost family.
Andy is set to be a first-time father to a baby boy via surrogate shortly, so Vicki and her castmates made sure to celebrate the occasion with A Star is Born baby shower theme.
Vicki, along with several other well-known housewives, hosted the star-studded event that was attended by over fifty housewives and other celebrities.
1 Vicki Considers Mexico Her Second Home
Vicki, along with her brother, sister, and her beau of the moment, spend lots of time in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. They make it a tradition to relax there every January. Mexico has become a second home of sorts for Vicki. She has retreated there for some much-needed rest, relaxation, and sometimes a little "whooping it up" for many years, even owning a condo in the country to the south.
Who knows, if the Real Housewives of Orange County doesn't work out for Vicki, maybe she can take her show across the border for a little Real Housewives of Puerto Vallarta!
Sources: Pop Dust, Reality Blurb