The Untold Truth Of RHOBH's Taylor Armstrong

Many people recognize Taylor Armstrong from that infamous meme of her and Kyle Richards screaming at a cat. Real Housewives of Beverly Hills viewers remember her for seductively eating cotton candy with her famously plumped-up lips, throwing an over-the-top party for her daughter Kennedy, and mostly for her difficult marriage with the late Russell Armstrong. She was a main cast member for the show's first three seasons and made some guest appearances after her departure.

During the show's second season, rumors swirled that Taylor was physically abused by her ex-husband, which she was confronted about on-camera. During the season 2 reunion, Taylor said these allegations were true and claimed that Russell's abuse started when she was pregnant with their daughter Kennedy, who was 5 at the time. She claimed that it continued, happening "every six weeks or so." Taylor also alleged that Russell threatened to bankrupt her and Kennedy if she ever took legal action against him.

In July 2011, Taylor filed for divorce, according to TMZ. In August of that same year, Russell died by an apparent suicide, per ABC News. The outlet also reported he was $1.5 million in debt at the time of his death.

Taylor Armstrong changed her birth name

Former Real Housewives of Beverly Hills cast member Taylor Armstrong got the last name that she's known for today when she married her late husband Russell Armstrong. However, that wasn't the first time she changed her name throughout her life. Her given name was actually Shana Hughes, according to her high school yearbook photo, which was obtained by Starcasm

During a Watch What Happens Live appearance, host Andy Cohen asked Taylor why she changed her name from Shana to Taylor, and in response, she claimed, "Taylor was my last name and that's what I went by with all my friends," which doesn't quite add up in all honesty.

Jezebel reported that she actually changed her name from "Shana Hughes" to "Shana Taylor" and eventually to "Taylor Ford" before she married Russell. Jezebel and other websites also claim that Taylor used to tell people she was an heir to the Ford Motors dynasty, but there's no concrete evidence that she actually said that.

Taylor Armstrong says her daughter doesn't miss her father

When Taylor Armstrong's late husband Russell Armstrong died in 2011, their daughter Kennedy Armstrong was only 5 years old. Taylor opened up about her daughter during a 2019 episode of Laura Wasser's podcast Divorce Sucks!.

The reality star explained she was trying her best to keep positive memories alive for the sake of her daughter. According to The Blast, she shared, "My psychiatrist had said to continue to bring up her father to her so that she doesn't think people just disappear." However, that's easier said than done and Taylor admitted Kennedy had negative memories of her dad.

Taylor claimed, "I was saying, 'Do you miss daddy?' And she said, 'No. N-O.' And I said, 'Well, I miss him sometimes. Do you remember when we went to Hawaii?' and I was trying to give her some references. She waited for a minute and then she said, 'Mommy, why would you miss a boy that screamed at you all the time?'"

Back in 2012, Radar Online reported Taylor responded to skeptics who didn't believe her abuse claims by releasing medical records on Facebook to prove she received surgery to correct an orbital fracture resulting from Russell's alleged abuse. As for Russell's response, he once told People (via ABC News), "Did I push her? Yes, maybe things happened in the heat of the moment, but it was during a time in our lives that was not characteristic of who we were."

Taylor Armstrong found love with now-husband John Bluher

In 2013, Taylor Armstrong opened up to E! News about finding love with a lawyer named John Bluher after Russell Armstrong passed away. She shared, "We knew one another through mutual friends. John helped guide me through all the legal and financial challenges with which I was confronted," following Russell's death. 

Taylor continued, "From that, a deeper friendship grew, and I remember one day last summer when [we] were in a business meeting and we both looked up at each other and suddenly realized we were looking at each other in a different light. There's been no turning back since that day." 

They eventually got married in 2014 after they appeared on the VH1 reality series Couples Therapy. On their wedding day, Taylor told People, "I married my best friend and Kennedy's family circle became complete." She shared, "I definitely believe the universe put John in my path for a reason. We were meant to be." She insisted, "John loves me for exactly who I am." 

Taylor has gone through a lot in the spotlight and behind closed doors, but she will always be revered by Real Housewives of Beverly Hills viewers — and anyone who reposts that infamous cat meme. She will be in the meme hall of fame forever and ever.