To borrow a phrase from a different Real Housewives of Orange County star, Shannon Beador's love tank is full. The 56-year-old has been with boyfriend John Janssen for more than a year, but season 15 of RHOC will be the first time fans see the businessman on the show.
"I've been so transparent -- sometimes to a fault -- on the show, so I can't be in a relationship and not talk about it or show it," Shannon tells ET of bringing the reality TV cameras around her beau. "I think that John was nervous, because he's a pretty private person. So, to be put out there, I thought he was very natural when we filmed. But then he would say, 'I'm sweating. I'm sweating, nervous,' but it'll be interesting to see."
The pair met through mutual friends on a night out last summer, becoming pretty inseparable ever since. While they were seeing each other every day, Shannon and John were not living together at the start of shooting season 15. Then, the coronavirus pandemic hit and California went into lockdown.
"I was very fortunate to meet John and it'll be interesting to watch our relationship this season, too, because even though you … see someone seven days a week, [with] quarantine, you're together 24/7," she notes. "So, it put an interesting dynamic into the relationship."
Viewers will get to see that dynamic play out onscreen this season, both before and during the pandemic. The premiere introduces fans to Shannon and John's modern-day Brady Bunch, each bringing three kids to the table -- Shannon has three daughters, while John has two plus a son.
"I think I knew most things about him but it's just, when you're together all the time -- typically people can go and have their independent space and that sort of thing, so it was an adjustment," Shannon adds. "It definitely was. But I'm sure it was for everybody, right? I mean, we wouldn't be a normal couple if you didn't have bumps, a few bumps."
While Shannon confesses to being in love with John, she's not quite ready to give him the label of "the one."
"I feel that with my age, I have one chance," she admits. "I want to be married and be part of a team and in a partnership for the rest of my life. I want to grow old with someone, but I need to know that it's the right decision. So, I don't wanna jump into anything. I want to take my time and that’s what we've been doing. I think that’s a good thing. You know, I think it would just be devastating for me emotionally to quickly get married and then realize, nope. This isn't it. And then go through all that again. I don't wanna do that."
Shannon finalized her divorce from her ex-husband, David, in April 2019, more than a year after they separated and nearly four since Shannon discovered David had been unfaithful to her. The couple spent most of seasons 10, 11 and 12 working on their marriage onscreen before ultimately splitting up, the aftermath of which played out on seasons 13 and 14.
Shannon and David’s eldest daughter, Sophie, 18, is off at college at Baylor University in Waco, Texas, while their younger daughters -- twins Adeline and Stella, 16 -- split time between Shannon and David's houses. Shannon says her current relationship with David "is what it is."
"He has no interest in co-parenting with me, which is sad," she laments. "He doesn't. He has his own description, I guess, of what type of person I am. I don't agree with it, so it is what it is. I wish him happiness, he is engaged and he's having a baby, so that's great, good for him."
David, 55, is engaged to Lesley Cook, 37. The couple announced earlier this year that they’re expecting their first child together, a girl.
"I'm surprised that it took this long," Shannon says of David and Lesley having a kid. "I expected her to get pregnant right away, so it wasn't a shock to me at all. Literally fine with it. No anger, jealousy, hurt, nothing. It's, like, nothing. It's all good."
"To think that after all that we went through in the relationship for me to be able to say that, that's good," she adds.