‘RHOC’: Dr. Jen Armstrong Rehearsed for the Season 16 Reunion With a Therapist Who Wrote a Personality Report on Every Cast Member

Dr. Jen Armstrong joined the cast of The Real Housewives of Orange County in its 16th season. But for once in the show’s run, the biggest drama surrounding her may have happened offscreen. The new cast member has seen personal and professional drama boil over into her latest gig. As a result, we receive some insights into where reality TV starts and real life takes over. 

Reality vs. television for Dr. Jen Armstrong

While Dr. Armstrong was a source for drama off-screen, she was relatively tame on-camera compared to other Real Housewives. Yes, she occasionally got drunk and became the life of the party, but she was mostly tame compared to the drama-heavy roster of the other housewives and their partners. 

Reality Blurb! notes how things got more intense off-camera. Dr. Armstrong, a cosmetic surgeon, was accused of medical malpractice after a woman, Judy Hecht, claimed an invasive cosmetic procedure left her disfigured. The lawsuit alleges that the doctor was negligent and inserted fillers into the wrong part of the face. 

Add to that some discontent from Armstrong’s employees, and it’s safe to say there was plenty of drama for Dr. Jen to contend with. She went to great lengths to ensure her drama was not at the forefront of the always contentious reunion special. 

Dr. Jen Armstrong brings strange receipts to ‘The Real Housewives of Orange County’ reunion

Dr. Jen Armstrong of 'The Real Housewives of Orange County' speaks to Andy Cohen during Watch What Happens Live
The Real Housewives of Orange County cast member Dr. Jen Armstrong | Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank

With extra baggage, Armstrong went to great lengths to ensure she had ammo when it was time to confront her woes during The Real Housewives of Orange County Season 16 reunion. According to Dr. Jen, she enlisted the help of a friend to ensure that not only she but all of her castmates were put under the microscope. 

“I did have a close friend of mine who is a therapist… She wrote a report for me,” she said per Reality Blurb! “She wrote a personality report on every person… [And] I had a friend of mine run through questions they might ask me to get used to the answers.”

Dr. Jen even rehearsed the reveal to make sure she was on top of her game. After all, the reunion show is where things often go off the rails, and her off-camera drama may otherwise take center stage. In many ways, Armstrong was wise to prepare ahead of time.

Dr. Jen seeks help for her marriage away from the cameras

Dr. Armstrong had a standard season in front of cameras. Her relationship with her husband, Ryne Holliday, played out like a highly-volatile soap opera right in front of viewers’ eyes. Holliday wanted to patch things up — not for ratings or entertainment value but for their marriage and their collective mental health. 

She took to Instagram’s S’more Date to recall how they confronted their public relationship, culminating in Holliday leaving home in a private matter that wasn’t likely to be broadcast. 

“He’s like, ‘Well I didn’t want to talk about feelings on camera.’ I’m like, ‘Then why did you walk out? You know that’s the storyline now. If you don’t want to be on camera, why don’t you just tell me you love me every day, and then they’ll probably just cut you because it’s boring,” she said.

While the couple acknowledges that the show sometimes can misrepresent the facts, the video exists in the public domain, and real problems highlighted the melodramatic editing on-screen. 

“Unfortunately, that was an actual real clip of how things had been between us, especially for the last couple of years. And so, if anything, it just made us say, ‘We have to separate or solve it.’ So we’re in therapy,” she said.

Where Dr. Jen Armstrong and her family go from here is anyone’s guess. She remains mostly silent on the legal woes. As her time on camera increases, perhaps the drama will, as well. Either way, Dr. Jen’s journey is a fascinating look at how the on-camera personas might hide far more interesting situations behind the scenes.

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