To say that new mom Bethenny Frankel is busy would be an understatement. Between her careers as a New York Times best selling author and natural foods chef, Bethenny is always on the go. Amidst the chaos, Bethenny finds time for what’s most important – her new marriage to Jason Hoppy and being mom to their 9-month-old daughter Bryn.
Bethenny’s life is about to go into overdrive as she promotes her third book, A Place of Yes, and gears up for her new reality TV show Bethenny Ever After which premieres on February 28. During a conference call, Bethenny opened up to Celebrity Baby Scoop about her “easy” baby, beating the reality TV/Housewives ‘curse,’ and how she won’t give into the “nonsense” of finding the perfect preschool for Bryn.
As your relationship with Bryn develops, do you see yourself as more of a best friend or a disciplinary to her?
BF: “I think I’m both. I’ll be tough. I’ll be tough but we’re best friends. She’s definitely a mommy’s girl. She’s a mommy’s girl and that’s such a good feeling. I’ve been good though about, you know, not – when she cries if she’s in bed not going to get her right away, you know. I wouldn’t let her cry in there forever. She’s got to enjoy her life and it is Valentine’s Day after all.”
How is Bryn doing?
BF: “Oh my god, she’s great. She says ‘momma’ and her second word I think is going to be ‘Cookie’ [their family dog]. And she has two teeth. And she’s just fun and sweet. And she’s starting to crawl. Not everywhere, she’s trying. She can go in reverse. She’s trying to figure out how to go in forward. She can downshift.”
How have you and Jason grown as a couple since last season?
BF: “Since the first season, well, you know, there was a lot in the first season about being – pregnancy and having a baby and planning a wedding which are, you know, big crescendos. Now we’re into the thick of being married and the first year of marriage is hard because it’s two people from two different worlds now aligning, living together. And as I talk about in my book, Place of Yes, coming together.
So, you know, we’re very different. He’s from a small town. He’s lived in the same place his entire life. I’ve lived in dozens of places. He’s Catholic and religious and I practice yoga. He likes his parents to be around all the time. I like to be alone a lot because my life is often very public. So it’s basically the show has a lot about in-laws and religion and to say the very least we go there just with what really goes on in marriage. And you can’t understand what people go through until you are actually married because it’s just…it’s a family and the dynamic just changes.
By the same token, having Bryn has brought us so much closer together and we feel like we’re a team and really a family and even Cookie’s included in everything. And we love our family. We both wanted this very badly. And we’re both older having Bryn so we appreciate it.”
Is Bryn a natural on camera?
BF: “She’s, you know…the problem is that she films with me because I am always with her. So I would love it if it were a situation where she was never on camera, that’s the truth. But the problem is, if I’m going to be filming four days a week and we’re going to be home or I’m going to be at lunch she’s going to be with me. So she’s very, very good. She doesn’t…as a child in general who doesn’t really cry or get upset about anything. She’s just a really easy, good baby. So she’s a pleasure.”
Have you talked about having more kids?
BF: “I mean look, I’m 40. It’s not like I could have a brood or anything but Jason really wants to have more kids so that’s why that’s even been a conversation or a discussion. It just isn’t something I would have thought about right so soon but I mean he’s right that we don’t have all the time in the world. We’re both old so, yes, I mean it’s too addictive. It’s the most beautiful thing in the world.”
You seem so busy! Do you feel you’ve had to make any sacrifices?
BF: “I’m a perfectionist so I pretty much do give 100% to work. I definitely, definitely give 100% to my husband, dog, and baby. But I feel that a lot of times I don’t have time for that much of a social life in-between. I don’t have at all that much of a life.
When I go out to dinner and have a drink it’s usually for work. I went out for the first time with a girlfriend in, you know, in about a year-and-a-half and it was good.”
Have people started asking you about what you’re going to do about preschool yet?
BF: “Yes, some people do and I will make one promise: I will not be obsessed. I will not argue with women over, like, slots. I’m not going to go kiss anybody, any dean or head of school by going to their house for coffee. Guess what? If a school isn’t going to want Bryn, we’ll move somewhere else. We’ll consider public school. I’m not getting involved in that whole nonsense.”
Are you concerned about the ‘Housewives curse’ might affect your marriage?
BF: No, not the show. And it’s our show, we’re not on…I mean listen, the Housewives could ruin a lot of things. I’m very happy that I’m not on the Housewives anymore because it’s just a whole different place. But my show…I’m an executive producer. I’m involved in decisions, nothing gets shot if I don’t know it’s getting shot.
And if Jason and I became unhappy as a result of the show or there were problems, we wouldn’t do it. The least of our problems are my show. You know what I mean? It’s just normal things like we go see in the show that are happening that are off that don’t have to do with the show. It’s just, you know, us being so different and in-laws and money and the more busy I get and normal life…those are the only problems that we have that everybody in the country has.”
How do you keep the spark in your relationship?
BF: “You have to make an effort. I talk about it in my book. You do have to come from a place of yes because when you have a brand-new baby, you know, every single night you’re not coming home having had, you know, a couple of Skinny Girl Margaritas and sticking lingerie on.
I actually have a line coming out which is Skinny Girl Smoothers and Shapers which are these problem-solving undergarments and they include lazy lingerie because it’s something you wear under a blazer or a sweater and then you take off the sweater and now you have lingerie on. Like tonight is Valentine’s Day… I’m going to bust out some lingerie but it takes effort to go into the closet and get it and put the heels on and the whole thing. So at least I’ll now have it under my blazer.
So you keep the spark alive. We do date night once a week. We switch off and who chooses the surprise we’re going to go and we usually pick some hip place so we can feel like we’re still cool. And, you know, then you get some and that’s how we keep the spark alive.”
Is it challenging filming your show now that you have baby Bryn?
BF: “I would say, you know, my show is about my life so having the baby… it’s not like I’m like, bye, we’re going to set. The set is my house so I get to at least be with her. I get to still be in pajamas and see her and hug her and go to lunch with her. What’s excruciating is when I have to go leave to go ice skating for two hours or I have to go leave to do this. It’s just… I don’t like leaving the house. I like being home with the baby.
So it’s not that the show really affected anything. I mean my crew was the same exact crew from two years. A lot of them are the best people from the Housewives that came with me and they know her. They’ve known me since I was pregnant and since I was single. And so it’s kind of a nice family environment even with everyone around.”
Have there been moments when you wished the cameras weren’t there? Like when Bryn’s changing or crying?
BF: “No, because then it wouldn’t be real and it wouldn’t be a good show. No, not at all. Especially with her. I will probably have a monster as my next child because she could sit through a three-hour lunch. She comes with me to get manicures and pedicures. She’s just a nice, easy kid from what everyone says because I have no experience. I have never had a kid before.
But no, it’s just been great. I don’t regret anything. Could you imagine if I just kept out everything that was embarrassing or my breakdown on my birthday or me uncomfortable with Jason’s parents or whatever. Then it’d be a terrible show.’
Sounds like Bryn has been an easy baby.
BF: Absolutely. I hear I have it easy. You don’t get more than what you can handle, right? Breastfeeding was really hard so I’ll say that was a challenge.”
Do you feel that your relationships were negatively affected while you were on Real Housewives of NYC?
BF: “Listen, my boyfriend first season did not want to be on the show. He did not think it was a good idea – had no interest in it. If you want to be on this show and your husband has a problem with it and doesn’t love it, it’s going to be very difficult. It could be very annoying. It could be very annoying for someone who finds… you know, by the way, Jason and I could never have stayed on the Housewives together.
He’s like, I don’t like these women. I don’t like what this represents. It’s nonsense and it’s just catty. He hated it. And he wasn’t really on very much as you could see. He was embarrassed. He didn’t want to be part of that. So if somebody has a partner or a spouse that doesn’t want that life it’s all encompassing and it can end up being very petty and minutia and, you know, that’s not going to be easy.”
Do you feel your rapid post-baby weight loss sent an unrealistic message to women?
BF: “No, I don’t. Look, I’m not supposed to keep my baby weight on because I’m supposed to make people feel better and I’m not supposed to lose it because I’m supposed to show anybody how it’s done. I did what I do. And on my tour, I have had between 1,000 and 1,800 women in a room and I have said, here’s the deal on the ‘international weight loss scandal’ that I had…
[I said] how many of you have treated pregnancy like a complete free-for-all binge? Not just eating what you want but going off the rail saying, this is your only time to do this. And half the room raised their hands because that’s what people do. Anybody who’s a mom knows that gaining 35 pounds by the time you’re giving birth five weeks early isn’t really gaining too little. And anyone who’s had a C-section knows they don’t let you eat for days until you pass gas and you’re in the hospital for six days and there I lost weight. And then I went back to normal.
I didn’t go on a crash diet, which is what most people do when they have a baby. They go on a crash diet. It doesn’t work. They beat themselves up. They start the process all over again. They start eating more. And now they’re six months and they’re in a bad place. I was just healthy before, during, and after. And I think it’s a great message to say to people, you don’t have to get all wound up about it. You don’t have to binge while you’re pregnant and you don’t have to crash diet when you’re not.”
Bethenny Ever After will premiere on Bravo, February 28, at 10PM ET/PT.