Bethenny Frankel Opens Up About Skinnygirl, Lost at Sea Rumors

 Jason Kempin/

Heard any good Bethenny Frankel rumors lately?

The wife, mom, author, mogul and reality star has had quite the week.

First, she was accused of staging a "lost at sea" ordeal for her reality show Bethenny Ever After? (Late last month, she and husband Jason Hoppy were stranded on a sailboat on the open sea for 20 hours in what was intended to be an 8-hour pleasure cruise.) Days later, the Huffington Post questioned Forbes' magazine's story that Frankel's Skinnygirl brand was worth $100 million, claiming it was acquired for just $8.1 million.

"The whole thing has been really upsetting," Frankel tells Us Weekly in an exclusive chat. "You have to spend 24 hours of your life defending your honesty to your fans. [These stories are] irresponsible journalism and … a waste of your time."

Both accusations turned out to be patently false. Bravo issued a statement about the sailing incident. "It is accurate that Bethenny, Jason and their therapist were stranded at sea when the navigation on their boat broke during a taping for [the show]," the network said.

"The Coast Guard referred a private tow vessel who eventually led their boat out. When people see the episode, they will certainly see for themselves that this was very real."

Forbes magazine shot down the HuffPo's $8.1 million claim in a Thursday post called, "Bethenny Frankel's Skinnygirl Deal: The Numbers Still Hold Up".  Said one financial expert: "Suffice to say, this was not an $8.1 million acquisition."

The happy mother to daughter Brynn, 17 months, became a star and successful businesswoman based on her frankness on Real Housewives of New York and her popular spinoff.

"I never realized I would even have fans by being so honest about being single, being broke, not being like the other wealthy women I was surrounded by," she explains to Us of her single Real Housewives days.

"My entire brand is based on that [honesty]," Frankel explains. "I felt like I had a responsibility to my fans to say something."

Still, with the fracas now behind her, Frankel is happier than ever. Little Bryn, she tells Us, is "amazing!"

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