We finally understand why Lisa Vanderpump quit RHOBH

The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Lisa Vanderpump is arguably the queen bee of the Bravo reality series, a title she earned thanks to her quick wit, flair for glamour, and enviable social connections. But after almost a decade on the show, the successful restaurateur ended her reign once and for all — news that came as a shock to many of her loyal fans.  

Of course, Vanderpump's departure from the hit show didn't come out of nowhere. There were a ton of factors at play, including her fractured relationship with fellow cast member and ex-BFF Kyle Richards, fan backlash, and a little thing called "Puppy Gate" (more on that later).

We don't want to reveal all of the juicy details just yet, but let's just say Vanderpump's connection to RHOBH is complicated and comprised of many unseen layers. And while the reality star once declared that if you throw her to the wolves, she'll come back "leading the pack," this claim hasn't always rung true. 

If you're in the mood for some tea, we're here to spill it, because we finally understand why Lisa Vanderpump quit RHOBH.

She can't win no matter what

Season 9 of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills started off with major drama between co-stars Dorit Kemsley and Lisa Vanderpump concerning a dog named Lucy. Kemsley adopted the dog from Vanderpump's dog shelter, Vanderpump Dogs, but later gave the pet away to another owner after it supposedly bit her young children. Kemsley was under the impression that the dog went to a safe home, but poor Lucy actually ended up at a no-kill shelter. 

Needless to say, Vanderpump was a bit peeved about the situation because she thought Kemsley should have returned Lucy directly back to Vanderpump Dogs, especially since the organization would have gladly taken her in. And amid all of this back-and-forth, Radar Online published a story that spilled the tea on the dog drama. The problem? At the time, no one knew about "Puppy Gate" except for the RHOBH cast members. Translation: Someone in their inner-circle probably leaked the story.

Many cast members accused Vanderpump of doing the dirty deed, which compelled her to take a lie detector that was filmed for the show. Although Vanderpump passed, the ladies still didn't buy her innocence. "Lie detector tests aren't even accurate," co-star Teddi Mellencamp," argued (via People). "And you can train yourself to pass them! Ted Bundy passed!" Kyle Richards added: "Innocent people fail them all the time. Guilty people pass them. They're not admissible in court."

Yep, it's clear this is a lose-lose situation for Vanderpump.

She might have no choice in the matter

Lisa Vanderpump's departure from The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills may have been be out of her hands, at least if you believe the allegations that her cast mates have iced her out. "She was bullied off the show," a source told Page Six about Season 9's drama. "[Bravo] is trying to stretch it out to make it seem like she's around. Lisa's not in it. All the other women will talk about her in the episodes, and they'll promote [the show] to appear as if she's in it, because she's the star. But she didn't film with them."

An insider also claimed to Hollywood Life that nobody was "inviting" Vanderpump anywhere, which prevented her from filming the show. Co-star Kyle Richards denied this notion, however, stating: "All I know is we've all wanted [Lisa] to be there and invited her to everything that we do and included her in things."

As the old adage goes, there are two sides to every story.

Protecting her husband?

It's no secret Lisa Vanderpump is very protective of her longtime husband, Ken Todd, especially where it concerns the ladies of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. So, it should probably come as no surprise that Vanderpump was none too thrilled when, in April 2019, videos surfaced of Kyle Richards seemingly mocking Todd. 

In the videos, Richards recites Todd's line of "Goodbye, Kyle!", which he screamed at her during a nasty fight at Vanderpump's home. Todd uttered the now infamous line after Vanderpump told Richards that she was done with taking "crap" from her regarding the "Puppy Gate" situation. Although Richards seemed hurt by the incident at the time, she later poked fun at Todd's remark in a series of videos, which ultimately inspired castmate Lisa Rinna to make her own post. Eep.

As for Vanderpump's reaction? She allegedly wasn't thrilled. "Lisa finds it insulting that the women of RHOBH are posting videos mocking Ken," a source told Hollywood Life. "Lisa is embarrassed that she yelled at Kyle. However, she is so protective of her husband and hates to see other people make such fun of him. Lisa loves Ken with all her heart and they are both very protective of one another. Lisa knows Ken was just stepping in to defend his wife and he'd do it again in a heartbeat if he felt he needed to."

Hmm, maybe Vanderpump sacrificed her spot on RHBOH for Todd's sake. It would make sense, no?

She has no more patience for two-faced people

Lisa Vanderpump and fellow Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Camille Grammer once had a great friendship, dating back to the show's premiere in October 2010. Grammer even invited Vanderpump to her October 2018 wedding to lawyer David Meyer. But while Grammer was kind and friendly to Vanderpump's face, she mocked her appearance during a dinner that was filmed for RHOBH Season 9. In front of the other cast members, including Kyle Richards, Dorit Kemsley, Lisa Rinna, Denise Richards, and Teddi Mellencamp, Grammer said: "Oh, God, before Lisa Vanderpump got her teeth redone …I had such an issue with the gums! I was like, 'Honey, you need new caps! Your gum line is receding!'" 

Understandably, the comment hurt Vanderpump's feelings once the episode aired. "She was a great friend of mine, and then she starts saying weird things about my smile, my teeth, my gum line," Vanderpump told TooFab. "I've never had a gum problem in my life! Never had a tooth problem in my life. That was the first thing, and then she kind of went on social media saying, 'I regret it. I was drunk.'"

Vanderpump also agreed with a fan who called Grammer "two-faced," a remark that cemented her annoyance with the situation. We can't say for certain, but there's probably a good chance Vanderpump didn't want to involve herself in this drama any longer. 

She lost her BFF

Any fan of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills can probably attest to the strong bond Lisa Vanderpump and co-star Kyle Richards once shared. From frequent hangouts to forging an alliance season after season, these two were once thick as thieves. Sadly, all of that changed in April 2019, when the pair found themselves in a battle royale over Vanderpump's character. Richards accused Vanderpump of selling a "Puppy Gate" story about castmate Dorit Kemsley to Radar Online, a claim the restaurateur vigorously denied. The conversation resulted in a screaming match, with Vanderpump kicking her former BFF out of her mansion.  

In a blog post about the "nasty confrontation," Vanderpump declared her friendship with Richards "finished." It's easy to understand that without her closest ally to rely on, Vanderpump would have a much harder time on the show. As many reality television aficionados already know, allies are important if you want to survive the cutthroat environment. It's not an experience you want to go through alone, to put it simply.

She's not short on other TV opportunities

For many stars of the Real Housewives franchise, the show is their bread and butter and main source of income. But for television vet Lisa Vanderpump, RHOBH is simply the icing on the cake, as she already has a spin-off show on Bravo called Vanderpump Rules. Making Vanderpump's position even better? The socialite is reportedly set to get another spin-off series, Vanderpump Dogs, which will cover the drama taking place at her animal rescue center of the same name, as Us Weekly reported in March 2019.

If the rumor is true, then it's clear Vanderpump has plenty of other opportunities outside of RHOBH. The business woman touched on this sentiment in February 2019, when she made a coy remark about her future plans. "There are other things in the works," she told Us Weekly. "There's something up my sleeve."

We don't know about you guys, but we can't wait to see what Vanderpump has been cooking up. Stay tuned.

Things got dark

One of the darker reasons concerning Vanderpump's departure is her fragile mental state. The dog lover opened up about her inner-struggle in April 2019, about a year after she lost her older brother, Mark Vanderpump, to suicide. Vanderpump told Us Weekly that filming the show while dealing with her sibling's unexpected death was "very, very, very tough," and that she "[managed] to try to pull [herself] together with grief counseling and antidepressants." She added, "I've never taken anything in my life, you know, I've never been to therapy in my life, but I think slowly I'm in a lot better place than I was."

In fact, Season 9 of RHOBH was so difficult for Vanderpump, she claimed she didn't watch the season's episodes. "I don't want to relive that time in my life," she told the outlet.

Yikes. It sounds like RHOBH became too much for Vanderpump to emotionally handle, so perhaps it's a good idea that she moved on.

Taking the time to properly grieve

When Lisa Vanderpump lost her older brother Mark in April 2018, she was beyond devastated. "This has come as a shock to us all. My brother and I had connected the day before this tragedy and I was completely unprepared for this," she said in a statement at the time. "He was my only sibling and I am shocked and saddened by his passing."

Although Vanderpump had considered taking Season 9 off from the The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills to adequately deal with the loss, she ultimately decided to soldier on despite her "instincts." The reality star later came to regret her decision, a sentiment Bravo exec Andy Cohen also shared. "[Andy] said, 'You know, I think we should've given you a year off when you asked for it,'" she recalled to Entertainment Tonight. "He said, 'I don't think you were in a mental state where you were really prepared to deal with it.'"

"I wasn't as prepared for combat as I should've been," she said, adding that she had "struggled a lot."

Considering Vanderpump had to juggle the Bravo drama while mourning the loss her late brother, it's not surprising that she bowed out of reality television for a sec so she can properly heal. At the end of the day, she has to do what's best for her well-being.

Some fans weren't feeling her controversial joke

Fans come and go, which is a lesson Lisa Vanderpump learned the hard way during Season 9 of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. It all started in May 2019, when Vanderpump made a transphobic comment during an episode of RHOBH. The comment went down while Vanderpump was taking a lie detector test, joking to the test administer that her co-star Erika Jayne is transgender. "Just don't ask me if Erika's tucking or something like that because there are some things I can't lie about," she said amid laughter. Yikes.

Vanderpump received backlash from her co-stars and fans, with one viewer calling on others to boycott her restaurants. Co-star Lisa Rinna added fuel to the fire by tweeting: "Who knew LVP was transphobic? Well, we know NOW!" A fan agreed, writing: "That was disgusting!"

Although Vanderpump apologized for her remarks, we'd imagine she'd have a hard time coming back from this one.

Does she want to play the victim?

Could part of the reason Lisa Vanderpump decided to leave The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills be because of her alleged affinity for playing the victim? Just ask fellow co-star Camille Grammer, who accused Vanderpump of ostracizing herself after refusing an invitation to attend the actress' October 2018 wedding. Although Vanderpump chalked up her decision to not wanting to have all of the castmates "against her," Grammer had a different opinion about the situation.

"I've been there. I've had to sit there and have people call me delusional, a liar — and maybe I have more strength than she has because she runs away from it," Grammer said during an episode (via TooFab). "Lisa's never been a victim. She doesn't live her life like a victim, but she's behaving like she is one. It's sad to see. This is not the Lisa that I knew. The Lisa that I knew would show up. What she's doing is she's running from everybody."

If Vanderpump is committed to the victim narrative like Grammer theorized, then leaving RHOBH was the perfect move. Or maybe that's our tinfoil hat talking…

Charity has her heart

One of Lisa Vanderpump's greatest passions in life is dogs, a love she she has demonstrated throughout the years via her charitable efforts. And since this cause is near and dear to heart, it's understandable if she left the The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills to shift more of her attention to this cause. TMZ reported in May 2019, for instance, that Vanderpump was focusing all of her efforts on "at-risk dogs in China," where the annual Yulin Dog Meat Festival takes place every year. We don't want to get into specifics regarding the festival's activities, but let's just say it's a dangerous time for pups.

Vanderpump also runs a rescue center, Vanderpump Dogs, where she takes in dogs from kill shelters. "They're owner surrenders, they're victims of abuse, so, we've gone in and saved them," she told The Independent. "We take them just before they're euthanized." The reality star also cited charity as her main mission as a public figure, telling the outlet: "Call it fame, call it celebrity, call it what you want. I think if you've been afforded a platform in life then you have a responsibility to help others. A duty, even. That's all I'm doing."

It's official, Vanderpump has exited the building

In a twist that many fans saw coming, Lisa Vanderpump officially announced her departure from RHOBH on June 6, 2019. The reality star was at an event in Los Angeles, where she told a Hollywood Life reporter that she was "1000 percent [done]" with the show. "I'm glad it's all over," she revealed. "It was a horrible year for me personally and professionally working in that situation, so moving forward now may be time for this." Wow, we can't believe the queen's reign has finally come to a close. Her exit definitely marks the end of an era in the Real Housewives universe. 

Despite Vanderpump's frustrations with the show, she admitted that she'll miss the cast … at least to some degree. "They were my family," she said. "I'm sad that it came to this, but I don't think I really had any other choice. You can only have the whole cast against you for so long. It was too difficult."

Au revoir, Vanderpump. We'll always remember the glamour, fun, and shade that you brought to the series.

She'll never be replaced

When Lisa Vanderpump announced her exit from the show, many fans looked to Bravo exec Andy Cohen for a reaction. Cohen touched on missing Vanderpump and her decision to skip the Season 9 reunion, stating on Radio Andy: "I wish she had been there. What can I tell you? I really wish she would have been there, and I think she would've done great and I hope and I think she actually could've left with some resolution." He added, "And as for LVP leaving the show, no one will ever replace her. I gotta tell you. And no one can replace her."

We can't help but reason that Vanderpump is comfortable to say goodbye knowing that no one will ever be able to top her presence. It's clear she holds a special place in Cohen's heart, and who knows, maybe she'll come back to RHOBH one day. But for now, Vanderpump sounds confident in her decision.