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Bethenny Frankel announces mom Bernadette Birk died from lung cancer

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Bethenny Frankel announced that her mother, Bernadette Birk, had died.Bethenny Frankel/Instagram

Bethenny Frankel is mourning the loss of her mother, Bernadette Birk.

On Saturday, the former “Real Housewives of New York City” star announced on Instagram that her mother had died at age 73 of lung cancer.

“She was complex, suffering, isolated and had demons. She was the most amazing woman you have ever seen, who left her abusive home as quickly as I fled mine,” she wrote alongside a carousel of photos of her mother.

“She was bright, funny, cultured and wise – but she suffered throughout her life from an eating disorder, alcoholism, abuse, smoking and self-destruction. Even though she wasn’t equipped to be a mother, she loved me and I have fond memories of her.

The “RHONY” alum said her mother died of lung cancer. Bethenny Frankel/Instagram
“She was complex, suffering, isolated and had demons. She was the most amazing woman you have ever seen, who left her abusive home as quickly as I fled mine,” she wrote alongside a carousel of photos of her mother. Bethenny Frankel/Instagram

Frankel said she experienced things that “no young child should have to endure” in Birk’s care.

However, she said her struggles made her a “strong, tough survivor” who could handle anything.

The Skinnygirl founder, 53, said she recently “reconnected” with her mother so that her 13-year-old daughter Bryn, who she shares with ex-husband Jason Hoppy, could “know her and to like “.


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“She loved Bryn and they shared a love of art,” she added.

“She had a friend, so my lifelong wish came true: she wasn’t alone. She was selfish in life, but selfless in death. She left what little she had to my daughter, wanted to be cremated and didn’t want anyone but me to know.

Frankel said she experienced things that “no young child should have to endure” in Birk’s care. Bethenny Frankel/Instagram
The former reality TV star said she “reconnected” with her mother so that her 13-year-old daughter Bryn, who she shares with ex-husband Jason Hoppy, could “know her and to like”. Bethenny Frankel/Instagram

Frankel claimed she had a “sixth sense” that her mother had died and began to release “some trauma” by dancing to the song “I’m Alive” in Birk’s favorite designer dress as she was dying.

“I remember her as a young woman during times of happiness who loved me and I long for those memories of affection. I mourn his loss, his life, his loneliness and my childhood. I mourn her inability to experience motherhood, the greatest gift of life,” she wrote.

“Goodbye mom, Bonnie, Bernadette. You have done your best and you are free and at peace.

“She loved Bryn and they shared a love of art,” she added. bethennyfrankel/Instagram
Frankel claimed she had a “sixth sense” that her mother had died and began to release “some trauma” by dancing to the song “I’m Alive” in Birk’s favorite designer dress as she was dying. Bethenny Frankel/Instagram

Frankel said she misses her “mommy as a little girl,” but is grateful that her teenage daughter constantly pushed her to meet her.

The former reality TV star urged her followers to call, connect and hug their loved ones even if they have a “complicated relationship.”

Several reality stars sent their condolences to Frankel in the comments section of his post.

“Thank you for being honest and not sugarcoating your relationship like many do. She seemed like a queen to me! My condolences,” wrote “Real Housewives of Miami” star Guedry Abraira.

The Skinnygirl founder said she misses her “mommy as a little girl,” but is grateful that her teenage daughter is constantly being pushed to meet her. Bethenny Frankel/Instagram
Frankel urged her followers to call, connect and hug their loved ones even if they have a “complicated relationship.” GC Images

“My condolences. This was beautifully written. Peace be with you ❤️,” added “Real Housewives of Orange County” alum Vicki Gunvalson.

“I’m so sorry for your loss 🙏🏽,” “Jersey Shore” star Snooki commented.

Frankel and his mother had a difficult relationship over the years.

She previously claimed that Birk had “never been a mother” to her and that she “never had a real childhood”.

The “Just B” podcast host also shared that she was raised by her stepfather, John Parisella, from the age of 5.




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With a penchant for words, Eleon Smith began writing at an early age. As editor-in-chief of his high school newspaper, he honed his skills telling impactful stories. Smith went on to study journalism at Columbia University, where he graduated top of his class. After interning at the New York Times, Smith landed a role as a news writer. Over the past decade, he has covered major events like presidential elections and natural disasters. His ability to craft compelling narratives that capture the human experience has earned him acclaim. Though writing is his passion, Eleon also enjoys hiking, cooking and reading historical fiction in his free time. With an eye for detail and knack for storytelling, he continues making his mark at the forefront of journalism.
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