"The Real Housewives of Orange County" star Braunwyn Windham-Burke has come out about her sexuality: She's gay.
The reality TV star made the reveal during an interview with GLAAD on Dec. 2.
"I'm finally comfortable enough to say I like women. I'm gay," she announced at the beginning of the on-camera interview. "I'm a member of the LGBTQ+ community. I'm a lesbian. It has taken me 42 years to say that but I am so proud of where I am right now. I'm so happy where I am. To be able to be comfortable in my own skin after so long is just so nice."
Braunwyn said she's left some proverbial breadcrumbs over the past year, including a much-discussed make-out scene with Tamra Judge.
"When we were getting ready for the reunion I was talking to a producer that I trust a lot, his name was James, and he said, 'How do you feel about this? Was it a drunken mistake or is this a part of who you are?' And I said, 'This is who I am,'" she said. "When I went to the reunion last year I kind of started baby-stepping into, 'This is who I am. I like women.' I was testing the waters with my friends, my cast, my family."
Despite her sexuality and her reveal that she currently has a girlfriend, Braunwyn plans to stay married to Sean Burke, her husband of 20 years and father of their seven children. Braunwyn notes that she and Sean sleep in separate bedrooms, and he has met the "Housewives" star's new love interest.
"I love Sean. I love him dearly, he is my person, he is my family. But I'm not attracted to men and I never have been," she said.
Her attraction to women, she said, "became something that I didn't want to hide anymore and I didn't want to keep secret anymore. I want to be able to go out to dinner with whoever I want without judgment."
Braunwyn further mentioned that her sobriety helped her become her authentic self.
"I know there's a correlation between the two," she said. "I know when you get sober and you start doing the work that goes into that, you start realizing a lot of the reasons you drank had to do with who you were on the inside."
Asked how she feels now that she's publicly come out, Braunwyn said, "I'm still getting used to it."
After her interview, the TV star took to Instagram to thank GLAAD for the support.
"It feels so good to finally be living my truth. I am a lesbian. At 43 years old, I've finally been able to accept this part of myself and I've realized there are no rules about when someone should come out," she wrote. "This is my time."