After ‘Real Housewives’ Star Claims She’s ‘Ready For Marriage’ the Love of Her Life Marries Someone Else

Sorry ladies, but The Real Housewives of Orange County (RHOC) former beau Brooks Ayers is officially off the market. Brooks recently married girlfriend Christy Groves Lindeman, telling E! News, “I’m moving on with life. I’ve never been better.”

The couple married in a small white chapel in French Lick, Indiana with family in attendance. One obvious person noticeably not there was Brooks’ former flame, Vicki Gunvalson. Vicki is never shy about saying she wants to be married and often wears her heart on her sleeve. While Brooks may be married, what’s happened to Vicki? No. 4 and 6 are heartbreaking.

1. Vicki just wants love

Vicki and Donn Gunvalson on their wedding day.

Vicki and Donn Gunvalson got married. But it didn’t work out in the end. | Donn Gunvalson via Twitter

Donn Gunvalson was the man in Vicki’s life before Brooks came into the picture. The couple was married for 20 years before they divorced. Vicki cites RHOC as being one reason that split the couple up, but also claims she was in a loveless marriage.

“My love tank has truly been empty for many many years,” Vicki told US Weekly. “We stopped communicating. My happiness came from my work and my children.”

Next: But then she meets Brooks

2. She thought Brooks was ‘the one’

Vicki blows a kiss while posing on a red carpet.

She seemed to really enjoy his company. | Valerie Macon/Getty Images

Brooks seemed to fill Vicki’s love tank by always being by her side and giving her the attention she desperately needed. The pair seemed inseparable heading off to Mexico or hanging around the house together.

Next: Scandal rocked the relationship to its core.

3. The couple breaks up over scandal

Vicki Gunvalson during an interview on 'Real Housewives of Orange County'.

They were dealing with some very public scandals. | Bravo

A potential cancer scam and a strained relationship with her daughter and friends may have been the final blow to Vicki and Brooks’ relationship, according to People. Although the relationship was on and off for some time, the couple officially called it quits in 2015. “After much prayer, thought, counseling, and consideration, we have decided to end our four year relationship,” the couple said in a statement to US Weekly. “We both wish nothing but a great future for each other.”

Next: Breaking up is hard to do.

4. The break up ‘broke’ Vicki

Vicki poses on a red carpet in a white dress.

She wasn’t quite herself after the breakup. | Craig Barritt/Getty Images

At first Vicki insisted the relationship may not be over. “We have unfinished business,” she told ET. “I did not want him to leave me.”

Then she just became depressed. Vicki admitted she was heartbroken and wanted to die so she could be reunited with Brooks again someday, People recounts.  “I said, ‘I kind of miss him,’ ” she said during the RHOC reunion show. “You guys didn’t know him the way I knew him. There was a point in time where I really felt he had my back and he really was a great guy. It’s been an evolution of emotions. And I really through he was my soulmate.”

Next: Vicki falls hard for her men.

5. She admits she has intense feelings for former flames

Vicki looks angry and hurt in RHOC.

She isn’t completely over her previous partners. | Bravo

Vicki carries a torch for her former loves. “Anybody I’ve been with, I will always love,” Vicki told ET. “I always will care for and love Brooks, regardless of what he did and why he did it, I will never know …  I know I didn’t lie for him, and I know there’s a lot of questions I’ll never get answered, but I love him.”

Next: Vicki said this relationship was the hardest to leave. 

6. Breaking up with Brooks was harder than her divorce

Vicki cries and has her tears wiped out of her face.

She had a hard time processing their seperation. | Bravo

Although Vicki was married for decades this breakup hit her the hardest. “I think my breakup with Brooks was much harder than both my marriages,” she said to ET. “Isn’t that crazy? …  I never was hurt as much as I was with Brooks. So, that was an indication that I was really in love with this man … I will always care for him until I die.”

Next: Vicki finds a way to move on after Brooks. 

7. But Vicki moves on

Vicki cheers during a party.

She was able to move forward. | Bravo

Over time, Vicki moved on and said she no longer has feelings for Brooks. She told Andy Cohen on Watch What Happens Live, “I don’t love Brooks anymore,” US Weekly recounts. “There’s no love. He was a person in my life and my past and I cared for him at that time, but no, I don’t love Brooks … everybody move on! He was a boyfriend, that’s it.”

During the discussion with Cohen she added, “I dated Brooks for four and a half. It’s like, come on. We weren’t engaged, we weren’t married, it was a boyfriend for a limited bit of my time. There is no status with Brooks. He has moved on.”

Next: Could Vicki’s new boyfriend be ‘the one?’

8. Vicki has a new man in her life

Vicki and Steve pose in front of a garden.

She’s moved on to a new fellow. | Vicki Gunvalson via Instagram

Vicki found love with former detective Steve Lodge. “He’s got a beautiful heart and he understands my life,” she said to People. “He’s a respectful man. He’s got four kids and four kids. My daughter loves him, which is one of my criteria. He treats me good. We’ll see what the future holds. Only God has the plan.”

She adds that she’s a better person today after going through those dark days with Brooks. “I’m resilient,” she told People. “They want to shoot at me and they can’t anymore because I know who I am. I’ve been on 11 seasons. So sit down. I want to be better, not bitter.”

Next: Vicki wants to take her time before marriage.

9. She wants to be sure about her beau before marrying again

Vicki and Steve's selfie at a bar.

She’s going to take things slow this time. | Vicki Gunvalson via Instagram

Vicki and Steve decided to buy a boat together, but the couple is still taking it slow. She told The Daily Dish:

Well, I definitely want to get married again… I want to be 100 percent, 100 percent, 100 percent sure. I do not want to go through another heartache or divorce. So lord knows I’ve gone through two relationships on camera, been married twice before, so I really don’t want to jump into it. I want to be sure. I’m looking at every red flag, and making sure that everything is right for me because I don’t want to fall out of love. I don’t want to have another heartache again. But so far, all the signs are he’s a keeper.

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