RHOC’s David & Shannon Beador Split After 17 Years Of Marriage: “I Felt Alone In My Marriage”

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I guess a huge cheating scandal coupled with reality television finally got the best David and Shannon Beador‘s marriage!

After a 17 union, The Real Housewives of Orange County couple are separating. Shannon reveals to PEOPLE the split happened a little over a month ago and also broke the news to her RHOC costars on Friday while filming the season 12 reunion.

“It’s heartbreaking for me and my daughters that this is the road that had to be taken but it’s the only way,” Shannon told PEOPLE. “I felt alone in my marriage. You can do what you can to keep your family together, but you have to have willing parties. You need two people to make a marriage work, and that just wasn’t happening in our relationship.”

“This is not the path that I thought that I would be taking,” Shannon said. “To come from the highest of the highs last year to go to such a low so quickly? At the beginning when it starts to crumble, you think, ‘This is just a phase. It’ll get better.’ But it never did.”

“As a mother, I want to be a good role model for my daughters,” Shannon explained. “Three years ago I was proud of what I showed them, because I fought for keeping my family together after infidelity. As the last year went by, it’s been extremely difficult and painful to watch the show, because clearly I was in denial about what was going on in my marriage. I was taking things out on other people instead of at home… .As a mother you keep thinking about your daughters and you have to say, ‘This is an unhealthy environment.’ Not only is it unhealthy for me, but it’s unhealthy for my girls, too. They deserve a happy and joyful home, and I am providing that for them now.”

“I’m a strong person,” Shannon adds when she thinks about life post-David. “At this point it’s scary, when you’re 53 years old, to be out there on your own. But I intend to show myself and my daughters that it can be done. I’m ready to get the old Shannon back, that’s for sure.”

Can’t say we’re surprised by this news.

The couple share three daughters together: Sophie, 15, and twins Stella and Adeline, 12. Wishing them all the best!

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