The 18 Most Bitter Real Housewives Feuds

Which housewives have been involved in the most memorable feuds?

There are many reasons why Bravo TV’s Real Housewives shows have been so popular … they give normal people a view into the lives of the rich and famous. But some of these women are no trophies! The Real Housewives of Orange County premiered in March of 2006 and has run for 14 seasons with a series of equally successful spin-offs that have sprung up, featuring housewives New York City, Atlanta, Beverly Hills and more. Each series has its own share of personalities and almost always two or more women who never should have been put in a room together.

Few of these women seem to be able to get along for the course of a single season let alone 10 or 12, but that’s what keeps things fresh and exciting. Some of these fights have even turned the women involved into household names! Considering some of their marital issues, you would think these housewives would use their sisterhood to help each other rather than fight, but that wouldn’t make for very entertaining television.

Let’s look at some of the biggest fights and feuds, but don’t be too surprised if you see some of the same names come up more than once!

From the 2008 debut of The Real Housewives of New York City, it was obvious Bethenny Frankel was going to be a star. Due to her forthright and — some might say — abrasive nature, audiences loved her. Everyone else on the show? Not so much.

Frankel and Jill Zarin were best friends at the start of the show, but after season 2, jealousy and other factors led to the two of them not speaking for months, supposedly because Zarin felt Frankel was getting more attention than her. On season 3 of RHONY, the two former friends got into it with Zarin claiming Frankel was getting her own spin-off series. Frankel retorted by accusing Zarin of leaking stories to the press about her. When Zarin’s husband, Bobby, lost his battle to cancer in January of 2018, the two friends made an effort to reconcile, but a month later, their relationship already seemed shaky.

Vicki Gunvalson was one of the original housewives on The Real Housewives of Orange County, and she was also the one who stuck around the longest (13 seasons). That sort of tenure was bound to lead to some conflicts, and boy, did they!

On season 7, the housewives were having an ‘80s party when Gunvalson became irate about a comment made about her looks by Gretchen Rossi’s boyfriend, Slade Smiley. This quickly turned into a shouting match between the two women that left the rest of them with jaws hanging wide open.

A few seasons later, Gunvalson was still fighting with the entire cast, but things got uglier when her husband, Brooks Ayers, was reportedly fighting cancer. Her castmates were confused, and sure enough, Ayers made the whole thing up, but Gunvalson continued to deny knowing the truth long after their split.

Bethenny Frankel found herself a new nemesis when former model Kelly Bensimon (far right) joined the cast of RHONY for season 2. It didn’t take long before the two women were going at it. What started out as tension at New York Fashion Week led to a confrontation between the two women, and the usually talkative Frankel was left speechless when Bensimon declared, “I just want to make one thing clear. This is you, this is me,” she said with one hand held higher than the other (representing Frankel). She finished by saying, “We are not friends. We will never be friends” … and things just went downhill from there.

In season 3, the two women ended up together on St. John in the Virgin Islands, and the seemingly intoxicated Bensimon just went off on all her castmates including Zarin, Alex McCord and Luann de Lesseps, before Frankel finally exploded, “Go to sleep! Go to sleep!” This ongoing feud did the exact opposite for the fans who quickly renamed this spin-off series “Scary Island.”

Like Jill Zarin, Alex McCord (far left) was part of the charter cast members of RHONY. True to the nature of “Scary Island,” they were soon going at it as well. Who knows why the relationship between these two ladies went sour? Maybe it was because McCord sided with Frankel while she was feuding with Zarin. During one season 3 argument, McCord called out Zarin with the classic line, “You are a mean girl, and you are in high school, and while you’re in high school, I am in Brooklyn.” To date, no one really knows what this insult means, but both ladies were dismissed from the show after the fourth season in 2011. Regardless, they continued to fight with each other about anything possible when given the chance.

There were many big feuds on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, but one of the relatively minor ones took place during season 8 when Camille Grammer (far right) got into it with relative newbie, Dorit Kemsley (far left). At one point, Grammer accused Kemsley’s husband “PK” of being over a million dollars in debt to another company, but that was only the beginning as the two women found any reason possible to go at each other.

The New York housewives could sure get into their fair share of fights, but Aviva Drescher came into the show late but went out in style, doing something unforgettable. Drescher joined in season 5 after many of the original feuding housewives had departed. She quickly got on her cast mates' nerves with her hypochondriac behavior. Finally, during a dinner party at Manhattan’s Le Cirque on the season 6 finale, Drescher had enough of being called a fake, and during another war of words, she got a leg up on the other ladies … literally! She reached under the table and pulled out her artificial leg and plopped it onto the table! Drescher would admit later that the show's producers knew she was going to do that. By then, she had already left the show in a huff.

By the time Dorit Kemsley showed up, Camille Grammer had already been causing trouble among the Beverly Hills housewives. In season 2, she had words with Taylor Armstrong who was dealing with the death of her allegedly abusive husband. At a Malibu party at Brandi Glanville’s house, Armstrong absolutely lost it and got into a huge shouting match with Grammer. Later, Armstrong would tell Bravo’s Andy Cohen, “I was a little drunk, absolutely, and a little crazy. I was dealing with so much, and my biggest fears were unraveling. For me, it was as though I lived my life for quite a long time with a boiling pot that I was holding the lid on top of, and it was starting to bubble over, and there was nothing more I could do, and I was losing my mind."

As recently as late 2019, Vicki Gunvalson was still having trouble making friends. When Kelly Dodd joined the show for season 11, she and Gunvalson became fast friends. It wasn’t long before that relationship turned sour, because with so many of the original Orange County House housewives gone, Gunvalson would need a new target. Apparently during one of the shows that hadn’t aired, Dodd called Gunvalson, a “con woman” who “preys on old people.” This comment turned into a lawsuit as Gunvalson claimed Dodd defamed her, the actual claim (filed under a pseudonym) claiming, “defamation, libel, trade libel, interference with actual and perspective economic business advantage, false light and injunctive relief.” Gunvalson not only sued Dodd but also Bravo and the production company in order to stop them from airing. It took less than a month for Gunvalson to drop the charges so that she could attend the season 13 reunion show, and apparently, the two ladies resolved their personal issue.

It may have been no surprise to the fans that Gunvalson finally gave up on RHOC, leaving the show after its 13th season in 2020.

In 2011, The Real Housewives of Orange County was still finding its stride when, during season 6, there was a famous moment between Tamra Barney (then Judge) (far left) and Jeana Keough (far right) that’s still being talked about. First, Judge accused Jeana of talking to the press about her relationship with ex-husband, Simon, then she physically served Keough a cease and desist letter. Keough responded, “I’ll throw your skinny little ass in the pool,” accompanied by a now infamous wine toss that’s become a hallmark for the show. Judge’s life has been fraught with scandal, yet she remains a regular on RHOC. Oh, she also got into it with RHOC’s Gunvalson because why not? Both Gunvalson and Judge finally quit the show in 2020.

Surely, you didn’t think we’d get this far without mentioning The Real Housewives of New Jersey and the inimitable Teresa Giudice, did you? Giudice was the lynchpin for 10 seasons of RHONJ even while she and husband Joe were charged with counts of mail and bankruptcy fraud. Teresa spent 15 months in a federal penitentiary and was released in December 2015, and her bankruptcy case was finally dismissed in 2018. Even before all that, Teresa had spent the first two seasons making an enemy of Danielle Staub  — more on her later. On the season 2 reunion special, things got so heated that Real Housewives producer Andy Cohen had to step in between the two women, but Giudice shoved him back into his chair.

We certainly can’t leave The Real Housewives of Atlanta off of this list because the show, which debuted in 2008, had some classic tussles. On season 2 of the show, Sheree Whitfield (second from left) and Kim Zolciak (far right) got into a heated argument that quickly turned physical. When Zolciak tried to walk away, Whitfield reached out to grab Zolciak’s hair and ended up pulling off her wig. That same season, Whitfield got in a fight with her party planner, Anthony, which ended with what would become a catchphrase for Whitfield, “Who gonna check me boo?”  These would be minor fights for Whitfield.

Although RHOBH started a few years after the original shows, it didn’t take long for it to turn into one of the most contentious shows in the franchise. Actress Lisa Rinna (on right) and restaurateur Lisa Vanderpump (on left) were friends when Rinna joined the show for season 5 in 2014. Like so many friends who appear on Real Housewives, it wasn’t long before they were at odds.

As with other feuds, this one began with a disease afflicting another housewife. In this case, Yolanda Foster, who claimed to have a form of Lyme disease called “Munchausen Syndrome.” Rinna accused Vanderpump of outing Foster’s illness and coercing Rinna to say Foster was faking it and even pulled out phone records on the season 6 reunion special to prove it.

Rinna and Vanderpump were still at odds as season 7 began, but they both stayed on for two more seasons before Vanderpump got her own show, Vanderpump Rules, in 2013.

Both Sheree Whitfield and fellow RHOA housewife NeNe Leakes had taken a break from the show, but when they returned for the Season 10 reunion in 2018 — Whitfield’s last season, as she finally was given the heave-ho — the two got into an argument about mugshots that started on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen and continued onto Twitter and through much of 2018. One of them had to go and Bravo decided to keep Leakes.

Things always get a little more complicated when family is brought into the mix, and sisters Kim Richards and Kyle Richards were already having their own issues during season 2 of RHOBH after an intense argument in a limo on the finale of season 1. When Kim's bestie Brandi Glanville joined the mix in season 3, the tension really escalated as Glanville and Kyle fought over Kim’s state — she had taken a pain pill and was acting “off.” What started out as a small scuffle soon turned into a full-on fight with crying and pizza throwing. Brandi told Kyle she’d “knock her teeth out,” and Kim stepped into the middle even though she and Kyle weren’t on the best of terms either.

Many years later, Glanville had seemingly made peace with the Richards sisters as she told Andy Cohen in 2019 that she had “turned a corner in her head” after running into Kyle at the post office. Who knows if the sisters are getting along, but Kim wrote a tell-all memoir that her sisters Kyle and Kathy (Paris Hilton’s mother!) have been so nervous about, that its release got delayed a year to 2021.

There were many times during the various Real Housewives episodes where things almost came to blows. During season 5 of RHOBH, two of the women regularly getting into shouting matches finally went after one another, Lisa Rinna took on Kim Richards. The cast was on an overseas trip in Amsterdam when Rinna, who had just joined the cast that season, made the mistake of questioning Kim's alcohol problems during what started out as a friendly wine lunch that turned into another ugly screaming match. Kim immediately got personal attacking Rina’s husband, Harry Hamlin, saying he had been unfaithful. “Never go after my husband!” Rinna screamed while breaking a wine glass on the table for dramatic effect. (She is an actress, remember.) It’s another classic and unforgettable moment from RHOBH.

Speaking of family feuds, there may not be a bigger clash than what happened between the Giudices and the Gorgas. The two families were brought together by the marriage of Teresa Gorga to Joe Giudice. They essentially became the Hatfields and the McCoys of RHONJ.

Even before the Giudices had their legal issues, the two families didn’t get along. Teresa’s sister-in-law Melissa Gorga — married to Teresa’s brother Joe — had officially joined the cast of RHONJ by season 5, so it seemed like a good idea to follow the families on a retreat to heal familial wounds. This time, it was the guys who got into it as Teresa’s brother called his own sister “scum,” and Teresa’s husband, Joe, tackled his own brother-in-law getting into such a heated fight that it would take two bodyguards to break them up.

After that battle, Teresa and Melissa still had to try to coexist on the show. Good luck with that. Over the next few seasons of RHONJ, the two women would have choice words for each other that continued right up until the season 9 reunion in 2019. And yet both of them returned for season 10.

You have to give extra credit to a RH feud that leads to an actual arrest. That’s exactly what happened during the season 6 reunion for RHOA when Kenya Moore (far left) claimed that Porsha Williams (far right) cheated on her ex-husband. Williams wasn’t having any of it, and she pulled Moore to the floor by the hair, forcing security to step in and break up the fight. Williams was asked to leave, but then Moore filed a police report that got Williams arrested on assault charges. Although Andy Cohen had considered firing Williams from the show, they were both still going strong through 2019’s season 12, and apparently, they got over the incident to become friends. "Motherhood definitely gave us something in common that is a new experience for both of us,” Williams told UsWeekly. “Being a new mom is pretty much all I talk about, so when I’m around other new moms, it is my conversation. I think it’s just a natural thing to do, since we had our kids close together.”

And we’re back to New Jersey for our #1 pick, which once again includes the feisty Teresa Giudice and a season 1 moment between her and Danielle Staub over the latter’s book, A Cop Without a Badge. Trouble was already brewing between the two women throughout the season, but this argument got ugly fast as Giudice started throwing insults at Staub, calling her a “prostitution whore” and then, amidst a flurry of expletives, flipped over the entire dinner table. That table flip is still a classic and one of the most memorable moments in Real Housewives history.

What’s odder about this feud is that the women still remained friends for many years with Staub returning to the show as a “friend” with the 8th season in 2017, although Staub quit again in 2020. The two even got together to recreate Teresa’s table flip to promote the thriller Greta in 2019.