The Real Housewives of Orange County’s Noella Bergener is currently going through a disastrous divorce with her estranged husband, “Sweet James” Bergener. (Actually, James may legally be her ex-husband already given that the divorce he filed in Puerto Rico has reportedly been finalized.)
Despite Noella saying that she was completely blindsided by the divorce, it hasn’t taken her long at all to find comfort with another man. The 36-year-old reality star appeared on Us Weekly’s Getting Real with the Housewives podcast this week and revealed some details about her new boo. (Full episode embedded below.)
Podcast host Christina Garibaldi asks Noella if she’s dating anyone new. “So, there is somebody!” Noella exclaims before laughing and letting out a long screech. “There’s somebody that I have known for years. He knew me married and knew my husband,” Noella continues, before quickly interrupting herself to say, “that’s not weird at all.”
“We just have a lot of love and respect for each other, we just kept it where it really should be — as really good friends,” Noella continues. “He was one of those that just constantly checked in on me. Like, the moment James left, just like, ‘How are you? Did you need anything? Do the kids need anything?’ Like, one of those.”
“It’s very, very fresh,” Noella says of her new relationship. “Right now, we’re friends who kiss,” she summarizes before adding another screech.
In addition to spilling the tea about her new relationship, Noella also shared some updates on her current situation. She says she is still in a tough financial situation because James reportedly cut her off from all of their credit cards except one. Noella says she still has access to an account linked to Instacart and Amazon.
“We’re just buying everything we can through Amazon,” Noella laughs. She says that they are stocking up on things like diapers, and she adds that James’ former office is now a “storage space.”
Noella also claims that James is still not paying rent on their home. “We’re currently squatting in our 10,000 square foot mansion, which is very eery,” she says.
Noella says that she and James have “ironed out all the details” on a divorce settlement, but he refuses to sign it. As mentioned above, James filed for divorce in Puerto Rico, and that divorce has already been finalized. Noella has protested the divorce and filed for a dissolution of marriage in California.
Noella insists that she was never a resident of Puerto Rico, and she also contests James’ claim in the filing that she admitted to infidelity. Meanwhile, James contends that the home they purchased in Puerto Rico was permanent and the they were renting the “mansion” in California basically just for The Real Housewives of Orange County. He says the lease expired in November.
Check out the full interview below, along with a video of most of the highlights:
Here is one of Noella’s many Instagram posts from the past few weeks in which she highlights her arguments against the validity of the Puerto Rico divorce. She mentions that the hearing was scheduled for today, but she has not provided an update on how the hearing went.
“Texts from the day James said I admitted to/or had an affair. Still not quite sure which because he keeps changing his story. The entire basis of his being able to file for divorce in Puerto Rico. Without an affair than he doesn’t qualify to file for divorce. I have faith that the courts will follow their own laws and overturn this sham of a divorce granting appropriate jurisdiction where we were married and raise our son, California. If NOT watch out ladies⚠️ ⛔️ Never go to Puerto Rico on vacation because your husband might be trying to screw you in a divorce.
“In order to qualify for a divorce in Puerto Rico we must either be citizens, which we’re not, or something nefarious happened in our marriage there. In James’ filing he eluded to me either having an affair or confessing to an affair. He said it was around the week of April 11th. Please check my gram. That was the week my daughter was there for Spring break. It was great family time.
“When asked to clarify in court, he changed his story that it was actually in Feb that I admitted to/had an affair and it was so bad that we required therapy. That’s a lie I could irrefutably prove.
“The first time we did therapy this year was in May, on my insistence, when I found out he had been lying to me about his partners indictment. I waived confidentiality so the courts could hear our therapist verify that he was lying under oath. Our therapist has seen us through some dark times. Infidelity for sure but not on my part. I added that he could be limited to only speak to our session dates. James did not agree to sign the release.
“Our judge made a ruling without any evidence from James of an affair or hearing our rebuttal evidence. Puerto Rico is a US territory with our court of law. This should never have happened since there was no affair & we are not citizens. Our appeal is being heard on January 5th.
“I call it a fraudulent divorce because it is exactly that. I don’t know the relationships James has forged in these past months in Puerto Rico but I do know that he has lied, given false testimony, and is abusing the courts there to escape his responsibilities in California where we were married, live and raise our son.”
To see how Noella’s divorce plays out (with a slight delay), tune in for new episodes of The Real Housewives of Orange County airing Wednesday nights at 9/8 on Bravo!