Bethenny Frankel’s ex tried to use her boyfriend’s death to call her an unfit mom

There’s not much that can make me feel sorry for Bethenny Frankel, but this is one of those things. You know how Bethenny took out a restraining order against her ex husband, Jason Hoppy, and has called him an abusive threatening stalker? Well Bethenny shares custody of their eight-year-old child, Bryn, with Jason. Bethenny’s on-off boyfriend, Dennis Shields, just passed away on Friday following an accidental opiate overdose. It’s absolutely sad and tragic and you would think that a normal person would take it easy on their ex, say they’re sorry for their loss and ask if there’s anything they can do. Only Jason used the death of Bethenny’s boyfriend as a tactic in their custody battle to question Bethenny’s fitness as a mother. (Apparently their court date was already scheduled.) What’s more is that Bethenny asked for an extra day with Bryn to talk to her about Dennis’s death and Jason said no! How vindictive is that? According to E! the judge encouraged them to work out custody outside of court but since that’s not going to happen they were granted another trial:

Jason’s attorney shared his condolences about the situation but said that “it was reported that he died of an oxycodone overdose. Our concern is, while the death is very sad, it raises concerns about Ms. Frankel’s parental judgment,” because Dennis cared for Bryn even when Bethenny wasn’t around. “What does it say about Ms. Frankel’s parenting that she would allow this person to care for her daughter? It’s downright dangerous parenting.”

Jason’s attorney brought up a recent episode of RHONY where Bethenny “appeared to be intoxicated, running around with no clothes on and saying she mixed Ambien and alcohol.” The attorney stated, “Our concern is whether Ms. Frankel might have some kind of substance abuse problem.” They requested drug testing for Bethenny.

The judge then cited the evaluation, which stated that Brynn “has two competent, loving parents.” The judge then accused Jason’s attorney of “throwing grenades across the table.”

Bethenny’s lawyer said none of their concerns about Dennis had ever been raised before. If Jason’s team were truly concerned about Dennis, they would have brought it up sooner. They claim that earlier this week, Bethenny had asked for an extra day with Bryn to help explain what happened to Dennis and comfort her and that Jason said no. The Bravo star’s attorney stated, “We have no reason to believe he is going to co-parent. He is going to be on the attack as he always was.”

Jason’s attorney denied that he said no to Bethenny having the extra day but instead wanted to be involved in explaining the situation to Bryn, stating, “He felt he had a right to be involved in the daughter dealing with it.”

At the end of the court appearance, the judge said he will schedule a hearing but if both sides can reach a settlement before then, the judge would encourage that.

[From E! Online]

I understand the drug test request for Bethenny given her storyline on RHONY, but the fact that Jason’s lawyer brought up her boyfriend’s death as somehow indicating she’s a bad mom is just despicable. And of course Jason wanted to be the one to explain it to Bryn because he can’t let Bethenny have even this one thing. He’s despicable and although I believed her side before I have much more sympathy for her. It doesn’t matter if you don’t get along with an ex, that’s a situation where you see their perspective, but Jason is trying to use the death of Bethenny’s boyfriend to his advantage. That speaks volumes about him.



Bethenny with Dennis Shields in 2016.

photos credit: Backgrid and WENN

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41 Responses to “Bethenny Frankel’s ex tried to use her boyfriend’s death to call her an unfit mom”

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  1. Jenns says:

    I’m honestly concerned for her safety. This guy is unhinged.

    • Millenial says:

      I always get that vibe from him, too. Doesn’t help that seemingly every week there’s a story in the news about dudes killing their wives, kids, girlfriends, girlfriends kids, exes, etc… etc… Ladies, when a dude creeps you out, listen to that voice.

      • Mel M says:

        Right!?!? I just read another one last night about a man killing his pregnant wife and two young daughters. It’s just absolutely heartbreaking and makes me feel physically sick. My husbands cousin is going through a divorce and she has four older but school aged children and he has been manipulative and verbally abusive pretty much from the start with all of them. He is making this divorce as excusiating as he can. It’s getting to the point of crazy because he has lost control of her and his children so he has. I thing to loose and I genuinely feel terrified for her and the kids that he’s going to do something horrible.

      • Esmom says:

        It’s so scary. I recently found out a fellow parent at my kids’ school was involved in something like that with her ex before we moved to town. They had already split, she had a restraining order against him and he ambushed her one day coming home from work and shot her and himself. Spared her life but not his. All in front of their three kids. I don’t know how you move on from that.

        Hopefully Bethenny’s situation is nowhere near this, but I guess it’s true that things can escalate quickly. Best to her.

    • Raina says:

      I know his type. Gas lighter. Comes eqipped with a match.

    • Raina says:

      To me, he seems like he literally hates his ex more than he loves his daughter. This is astoundingly bitter and petty. I agree he seems unhinged.
      Get over it ALREADY.
      Watch out for the so-called “good” quiet ones. Some of them come armed with missles. And, yes, she has her issues. But this was unbelievably vindictive. It won’t speak well to his character in the long run.

  2. Lady D says:

    I dislike her intensely, and I absolutely owe her an apology for ever being on this douche’s side. What an ignorant pos he is.

  3. Emily says:

    If Jason’s on-again, off-again love interest had died of an overdose, Bethenny’d do the same thing. Both of them are terrible.

    • ChillyWilly says:

      oh yeah, she totally would!

    • Tate says:

      I agree. Both awful people.

    • LahdidahBaby says:

      Yes, I completely agree.

    • HyacinthBucket says:

      Bingo. They are both horrible parents. I hope Bryn develops a healthy relationship with food

    • Jasmine18 says:

      I completely agree. Bethenny’s behaviour on RHONY is domineering and condescending, qualities she no doubt brought to her divorce/custody proceedings. I really don’t ‘get’ the Bethenny-love from Bravo fans.
      She chose a husband who seems to be equally arrogant, unreasonable and inflexible.

      How ironic that they are a mirror for each other and can’t see it.

  4. ChillyWilly says:

    I wish people wouldn’t use their children as weapons to hurt their exes. It’s so cruel. I have no idea who the better parent is in this case but I feel so bad for Bryn. Kids don’t deserve this crap.

    • PlainJane says:

      This is the relevant point in the entire story, the damage done to their child. Weaponizing children has devastating consequences on the child’s self esteem! The child’s needs should come first always, not some bitter feud between selfish, spoiled grown-ups.

  5. Lala11_7 says:

    They’re BOTH awful…but he’s scary…I thought that even when they did that wedding show…

    That I watched…

    For some…damn…reason…

  6. Tiffany says:

    I thought Bryn was 8 or 9. This feels like it has been going on longer than 4 years.

  7. Bella DuPont says:

    Death should be a leveller (at least temporarily)…….a time when two warring sides can put down their weapons and acknowledge that something devastating has just happened.

    Only a complete DICK would seize the opportunity to launch attacks on the other side.

    Very poor form, Jason. Very, very poor form.

  8. Lila says:

    I don’t see the issue here..

    Aside from the things he’s done before, I feel like any parent would question their ex’s judgement, their ability to parent, & want answers as to why their child was around a drug abuser when this parent knew what was going on.

    • Happy21 says:

      You’re totally right. I have a couple of casual acquaintances who have lost boyfriends and or girlfriends to the opiate crisis that seems to be taking over North America and in all cases the exes got involved due to the child(ten) being around a known drug user and the parenting abilities were most certainly questioned.

    • Toot says:

      Same. I’d be looking at the ex too.

    • TandemBikeEscapee says:

      As a person w relatives on Puerto Rico, we all love Bethenny and how she has shown up for the people, directly charitable in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. I never followed her story, and am sad she is involved in the housewives show, which seems so demeaning to me-I’ve never seen one episode. However, as a person in a brutal custody battle, my x called our family’s dog’s death “karma” and was cold about letting our son say goodbye- the judge did NOT take this well. However, if one of our partners died of an opiate overdose, it would warrant imminent concern. Death is death, but if drugs are involved, let’s admit it’s a red flag re parenting.

    • iconoclast59 says:

      Drug users are notorious for being skilled liars and can be very adept at hiding their drug use. It’s possible that Bethenny didn’t know how bad it had gotten with Dennis. I can’t picture her knowingly exposing her child to a hard-core drug user.

  9. Jess says:

    I feel like this is a reasonable concern for any parent, but what sickens me is the man is barely in the ground and Jason’s running to his lawyers, which tells me he’s not actually worried for Brynn. Why not take time to find out of Bethenny even knew about the pills or if Dennis was under the influence while watching her. Plus, working in the medical field I see how many people take pain medication for chronic issues and that doesn’t automatically make them bad people, and they’re fully capable of caring for children, not driving though, which I bet Dennis didn’t do anyway living in NYC.

    Jason is a douche, I’m not a huge fan of Bethenny but Jesus Christ give her time to grieve before hitting her with this BS.

  10. Karen says:

    Bethany would have done the same if the shoe was on the other foot.

    And yes a parent should be concerned about the company their ex’s keep. The timing of this was not very nice but it may have been scheduled court time.

  11. Barrett says:

    He’s being a jerk and should give her the day to talk w her kid but the oxytocin thing made me thing what is Bethany doing, who is she hanging out with? Dorinda was called out for doing coke. The ambien thing!

  12. DP says:

    I think they both seem like vindictive idiots. I feel so sorry for Bryn.

    Seeing how Bethenny spun the details about what happened between her and Carole this season (Yes, I watch rhony- sorry!), I started to wonder how much she spun and manipulated her relationship with her ex. On the other hand, a judge ruled in her favor as far as the stalking goes, so he must really be doing scary stuff!

    With that said, I would be concerned as a parent if someone my children spent a lot of time with died of an accidental drug overdose. The timing may be bad, but it is a red flag to me too.

    • Natalie S says:

      I watch rhony too. It’s the best one though this current season hasn’t been much fun.

      I thought all the charges were dismissed. Both Bethenny and Jason seem vindictive and manipulative. Bethenny couldn’t talk about the details on camera so she got Carole to do it last season which is inappropriate but those texts sound awful. Bethenny would have gone after Jason if his SO overdosed. She’s already trying to get full custody. They’re both not behaving properly.

  13. kgeo says:

    After watching her interactions with Carole this season, I’m starting to think Bethenny could teach a course on gaslighting 101, and I have had a stalker, so I don’t say this lightly. She is really capable of twisting a narrative. I also think that it’s perfectly fine to question someone’s parenting fitness if an acquaintance that acts as a care taker overdoses. Definitely need to get the details on how and when he was using (she may not have known), but you better believe it would raise red flags for me.

    • DP says:

      Agree! She really was gaslighting Carole. I wonder what if she sees it watching back.
      Btw, You have a stalker? I’m sorry to hear that. So scary!

      • kgeo says:

        HAD! Thanks, it was super scary. 10 years ago, but my heart still skips a beat if I think I see him out somewhere.
        I hope she sees it when she looks back, it’s really not okay to do that to people.

    • Natalie S says:

      Yes, the Berkshires dinner. “You’re really freaking me out right now.” “You don’t have to like it, Carole.” Interrupting and deflecting but immediately getting up to leave when she had to speak. So creepy and manipulative. That was abuser behavior. If she’s like that on camera, how bad is she in private?

      Someone on another forum called Bethenny’s style -slap and hug- “You’re cold. I miss you.” Her whole thing is about being overwhelming and controlling the other person.

      • kgeo says:

        That Berkshires dinner….I could almost see her side in a lot of things, but that was very telling.

  14. Nancy says:

    Once again, it’s the kid that suffers. I watched their show a few times. She is exhausting to watch on every single level. I felt bad for him since she was such an entitled bitch. Maybe living with her made him just lose all his marbles or some such shat. Idk. To me, she is Kate Gosselin without the dyed blonde hair.

    • Borgqueen says:

      I was wondering if everyone and I were watching different shows about her marriage. She was not nice to Jason, belittling him about his earning capacity, etc. I can see how that can turn a person angry and vindictive. (3 months ago I moved out of my bf house after 8 yrs together and having time to reflect on the relationship and things I should have never allowed. Sometimes I get angry at the lost time) I bet Jason has been reflecting on his past relationship and is just plain angry at Bethenny. Of course it is not right to use their daughter as a pawn, but they both do that.

      Just a question – if Dennis babysit Brynn alot many times, is that crazy that Jason has a reason to question who is around his daughter. Albeit the timing is just plain cruel but I have no doubt Bethenny would do the same to Jason.

  15. OkieOpie says:

    Like Heard and Depp, they both look like they are bonkers. Though, honestly, if you had an ex who’s boyfriend died of an OD and your kid was in that residence wouldn’t you be concerned about this as well? The guy is an dick no doubt but his concern is not misplaced.

  16. Lexa says:

    I feel sorry for Bryn in all of this. Admittedly, I’ve always been on Bethenny’s side in the divorce/custody battle, but I also think this move is especially crappy. Sources from his camp have said that Dennis was taking the medication for back pain and his actual cause of death was the heart attack that was brought on by taking too much of it. We don’t really know anything about his life or his relationship to the medication (for instance, if he was truly addicted or reckless with it vs having a really bad, painful night and taking a little too much for his body to handle). I feel pretty certain that Bethenny would not knowingly put her daughter into a dangerous situation, or wouldn’t immediately pull her away from it once she understood what was going on. Also, it’s been stated a few times this season that Bethenny and Dennis were on a months-long break with no contact between them.