Empowerment Series: The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Daytime Emmy-Winning Actress, and Author, Eileen Davidson Shares “Beyond Salem” with AW
If you are a fan of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills (RHOBH), Days of Our Lives, The Young and The Restless, Santa Barbara, or The Bold and The Beautiful then you are familiar with Eileen Davidson. She is part of the royal court in daytime soaps. The two-time Emmy winner is a favorite for her role as Kristen DiMera in Days of Our Lives. Fans who wanted to loathe the tragic character, instead found themselves sucked in by her schemes. She portrayed a baddie who wanted to be good but somehow, always ended up drenched in venomous behavior.
As a cast member of the reality show, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, audiences got a peek into who the woman is outside her television character. I was elated to receive news of an opportunity to interview Eileen for this series. Her energy came through in a positive, friendly, and genuine way, as she shared her stories during our phone call. Sometimes, the challenge of these interviews is to grasp the essence of the person and their thoughts then translate in a way that gives the readers a true visualization of the exchange that took place during the conversation. She made it an easy exercise by being herself and making me feel comfortable during the process. I’m sure you will find this interview, as entertaining as I did!
You have an impressive history in daytime soaps but countless fans, love you best as Kristen DiMera and Susan Banks on Days of Our Lives. Kristen DiMera’s character is strong, unapologetic, calculating, and intense. She is the villain we want to hate but can’t because we connect with her vulnerability. The fictional character is a broken woman who loses everything she cares about in life. I believe we are all broken in some way, probably not to the degree as this character but everyone has “stuff” to work through in life. As women, we often silence ourselves to make others happy, or comfortable. Ultimately, internalizing things can inflict pain on the inner self, there’s potential to lose our identity, self-worth, and courage to go after the things we most. Have you experienced a time in your life when you felt broken or vulnerable? Kristen tries to do the right thing, she feels like she lost something which makes her feel extremely vulnerable. There was a time in my life when I was faced with making some major decisions, difficult choices. It was a scary and lonely place, I felt “lost at sea” with no direction. Yes, I have experienced the same. I think we have all been in that space at one point or another but we can power through it.
I try to walk on the positive side of life and spread inspiration through my writing, actions, and in everything I do. In a past interview, you talked about the importance of being human. We have to take ownership of our mistakes, none of us are perfect and that’s okay. As a cast member of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, you carried yourself with grace and kindness, two great qualities! Working alongside a group of strong women probably has its ups and downs. What did being on the show teach you about female friendships? It’s complicated because the show takes place in a heightened setting. This is not an easy gig. Life in front of the cameras is not the healthiest way to form friendships but we do have a real sisterhood. We have shared experiences on the show that connects us. We all feel a bond, I still talk to other housewives – Kyle, and Erika, and Lisa. I learned a lot from being on the show, for example, what drives people. Also, I learned about myself, like what I’m willing and not willing to do.
You have done daytime soaps, a reality show, written several books and you are a mom! It is challenging to juggle everything in our lives and make the right calls each time. You have talked about the importance of listening to your intuition and trusting yourself. I live by the same rule, of course, I did not get there without some serious growing pains. Can you tell us about a time during your journey that forced you to question whether or not you were on the right path? How did you resolve the ambivalence of that moment? I have asked myself that question at different times. Everyone at some point has questioned what’s next. “Where am I going? I’ve been blessed, I trust my instincts which have been useful in various situations.
I was right out of a breakup, had left The Young and The Restless, it seemed like I wasn’t really doing the right things. There was so much I was supposed to be doing but felt paralyzed by what “they” (everyone else) were thinking. The outside world’s judgment, opinions, or say on my life was affecting me. My wake-up call came like a bat over the head after attending one of Marianne Williamson’s talks. She said some words that stuck with me “This town is full of people waiting to be stars, instead of starring in their own lives.” Listening to her talk changed my life, it was a big moment of self-reflection helping me figure out how I wanted to live my life from that point on.
The news is out! You have joined the cast of DAYS OF OUR LIVES for a limited series, BEYOND SALEM which begins streaming, September 6 on Peacock. Can you share with us a little about what fans can expect to see, as far as, your character – Susan or Kristen? Give us something to get excited about! I can tell you it will be jam-packed with fun and surprises! It is a romp, and it’s so different! Excited to be part of “Beyond Salem” and have it seen on a streaming platform like NBC’s Peacock is amazing! It’s also been nice to work with Lisa Rinna, I got to see her on the set!
AW likes to end interviews on a positive note. We are living in a time of uncertainty, millions of people are in some type of transition. Change makes most of us uncomfortable, a fear of the unknown is difficult to manage. You have navigated many changes throughout your own life. Can you provide a message, mantra, advice, or quote to encourage readers during this time of unpredictability? It’s hard enough building yourself up but you have to, in order to support those that need you. Times are tough, things are weird right now on all levels. There is a lot of turmoil in the world. The one thing I know is constant in this life is change. It can be frightening and crazy but you must choose to evolve. We have to be able to morph – change is inevitable, get used to it. It is hard but also the place where you will thrive and flourish most!
Every woman taking part in this series has left readers and me with a gift. AW is grateful to Eileen Davidson for sharing a piece of herself with us. The actress delivered her thoughts in an honest and relatable tone. Our conversation helped to remind me of something truly valuable. We can come from different backgrounds, cultures, ages, financial statuses, and places in the world but in the end – we are all human. As women, much of what we experience consists of similar emotions and circumstances. Believing that we can learn from one another is the reason I’m inspired each day to continue writing these stories.
Tune in to Peacock on September 6 to see Eileen Davidson in Days of Our Lives: BEYOND SALEM. New episodes will drop daily culminating with the limited series finale on Friday, September 10.
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