The Heartbreaking Details About Eileen Davidson's Personal Life

The following article includes allegations of sexual assault and domestic abuse.

Eileen Davidson is no stranger to challenges. As a longtime soap actor who got her start in "The Young and the Restless" and made her way to "Days of Our Lives" as the villain Kristen DiMera, she has served plenty of heated moments. Davidson brought that energy into "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" when she was cast in 2014 and while she didn't start arguments with her cast members, she wasn't afraid to fight back. Many fans won't ever forget the moment Kim Richards called her a beast and in true soap opera fashion, Davidson gasped, "Beast? How dare you!"

Davidson recalled feeling nervous about going into reality television after word circulated that she would be getting $750,000 per season — a detail she claimed was false. "And I knew I wasn't. But then I realized in that moment what [the producers] were doing ... What they're doing is they're setting it up so that there's already conflict before these women even meet me," she told AV Club. Unfortunately, drama for Davidson wasn't only reserved for her television moments. The "Bold and the Beautiful" star has endured lots of heartbreak in her real life and some events were so tragic, they would fit right into a soap opera storyline.

Eileen Davidson had a tough childhood

Eileen Davidson appears so poised and confident that you would never know she grew up struggling. In an appearance on "State of Mind with Maurice Benard," she shared that growing up with six other siblings resulted in a "lot of laughing or a lot of screaming." Davidson elaborated, "Doors slamming, fighting, and hair pulling." On top of that, she described feeling shame, which stemmed from her childhood and Catholic upbringing. "My father was manic-depressive. He wasn't diagnosed, but his behavior was pretty bizarre. And there was so much shame attached to that," she stated, adding that her dad would disappear into his room and not speak to her for half a year at a time. Davidson also revealed that her "mother was an incest survivor" and that she didn't find out about this until her 20s.

Sadly, Davidson's mother died before the "RHOBH" Season 6 reunion, which she hid from her castmates. "I knew it would rob everyone of their ability to be honest with me if they were all walking on eggshells. Moreover, I couldn't even talk about my mother without breaking down," she shared via Bravo. In 2021, she posted a tribute to her late mother on Instagram. "My mom would've been 99 years old today. Happy birthday, mama!" she wrote.

More deaths in the family

As if the death of her mother wasn't hard enough to endure, Eileen Davidson lost her brother a month prior. In February 2016, she wrote on Bravo, "I'm here with a very heavy heart to share the news of another beloved family member passing away. Sadly, my eldest brother, John 'Jack' Davidson, left us suddenly last week at the age of 69." Davidson went on to describe her brother as "brilliant" and shared that he left behind two kids and seven grandchildren.

Davidson previously faced heartbreak when her sister died from cancer in 2014. "One of my sisters died in my arms ... She was diagnosed with breast cancer, she was going to get surgery, and then she decided she never liked doctors, they terrified her. So then she decided to heal it homeopathically," she recalled on "State of Mind with Maurice Benard." She described how she and her niece weren't allowed to talk about the cancer with her sister, who had lied to them about how long she had left to live. However, one day, Davidson received a phone call from a nurse telling her to see her sister before she died and drove three hours with her niece to say goodbye. Tragically, Davidson lost her niece two months later from an apparent overdose, as reported by the National Enquirer. "It was an emotional one-two punch for Eileen," a source stated.

Eileen Davidson was in abusive relationships

"RHOBH" Season 6 was full of explosive moments but in a heartbreaking episode, Eileen Davidson revealed to her cast members that she had been in two abusive relationships. When pressed for details, she explained that one of her exes hit her so hard, he broke her nose and the police had to be called several times. "Nobody would think someone like me would be in a situation like that," she admitted in the episode. She added that she felt those in similar situations should know that they can get out of abusive relationships and that she was "here to tell the tale."

In a blog for Bravo, the soap star detailed her reasons for opening up about her past abuse. "I consider myself a strong woman. I've played strong female characters throughout my acting career. I think most people who know me would describe me that way. Being 'strong' doesn't mean you can't find yourself in an abusive relationship. It can happen to anyone," she wrote. Davidson shared that the relationships happened while she was in her teens and then in her 20s and urged others, "You can get help. You can leave."

Eileen Davidson and her husband were accused of having an affair with each other

Fans of "RHOBH" saw Eileen Davidson's loving marriage with her third husband, Vincent Van Patten during her time on the show. However, it came into question when Brandi Glanville accused her of being a homewrecker in Season 5. Davidson admitted that she and Van Patten were both married to their respective spouses when they met and insisted that they had no intention of leaving. The following season, Lisa Vanderpump grilled her about the start of their relationship and Davidson elaborated, "I met him on ['The Young and the Restless'] ... I knew he was married and I was married and I was totally respectful of that... but whatever. So, he and I, we had a friendship for a long time." She revealed that she and Van Patten "kind of fell in love" and she ended up telling her husband that she had feelings for someone else.

When their romance first started, Radar obtained pics of the still-married couple jetting off to Las Vegas. According to the publication, Davidson's ex, Jon Lindstrom, filed for divorce in 2000, while Van Patten's ex filed in 2001. Davidson and Van Patten are still going strong and revisited their first getaway together in 2023. "Pickleballing Vegas style! @ppatour @vince_van_patten and his partner Darren Goldberg still in it!!!" the reality star shared on Instagram. The two have been married for almost 20 years and share their son, Jesse.

Eileen Davidson struggled with starring in RHOBH

Being on a reality show is bound to stir up many emotions but one word Eileen Davidson had for her three seasons on "RHOBH" is "stressful." During a podcast episode of "Behind the Velvet Rope," she shared that she had PTSD from the Bravo show. "I wasn't present in my own life anymore. I was present with this other universe and all the B.S. that was going on in this universe." She described having insomnia and getting sick often while filming. "It was crazy," she added. Still, she doesn't regret her experience but being off "RHOBH" is a big relief for her.

On whether she would ever return, Davidson told ET that she would consider it and still has love for her former cast members. However, she added, "I don't know, it would be kind of weird trying to get back on that pony. I'm not sure." Many fans loved having the "Santa Barbara" star on "RHOBH" so if she has time in between her soaps, perhaps she'd be open to popping in once in a while.

If you or anyone you know needs help with mental health or addiction issues, has been a victim of sexual assault, or is dealing with domestic abuse, contact the relevant resources below: