'Selling Sunset' star Chrishell Stause says she 'contemplated quitting' the show after her divorce from Justin Hartley

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justin hartley chrishell stause september 2019
Justin Hartley, left, and Chrishell Stause arrive at the 71st Primetime Emmy Awards on Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019, at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.Vince Bucci/Invision for the Television Academy/AP
  • Chrishell Stause says she debated quitting "Selling Sunset" after her divorce from Justin Hartley.

  • The real-estate agent finds out that her husband filed for divorce on season three of the show.

  • In her memoir, she says producers convinced her that they weren't interested in exploiting her.

Chrishell Stause considered walking away from "Selling Sunset" after her 2019 divorce from Justin Hartley, she writes in her forthcoming memoir, "Under Construction: Because Living My Best Life Took a Little Work."

On season three of the Netflix reality show, the real estate agent receives a text message from the "This Is Us" actor, her husband of two years at the time, notifying her that he filed for divorce.

"Although there were definitely signs that things were far from perfect, ending things in such a finite way, without talking it through, was a complete shock," she writes in an excerpt from her book that E! News published on Wednesday.

Since season three debuted on the streaming platform in August 2020, Stause says she's fielded many questions about why she stayed on the show.

And at certain points, she "contemplated quitting," she writes.

"I had put so much of my identity into that relationship that I no longer knew who I was without it," Stause explains, continuing, "It took some convincing on the part of the producers to make sure I knew that the show was not looking to exploit my pain, but instead would allow me to share my story on my own terms."

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Chrishell Stause worked as a soap opera actress before getting her real estate license.Amy Sussman/Getty Images

Because so much in her life had changed so quickly — from the loss of her father to lung cancer in April 2019 to her divorce in November 2019 — she decided to keep her job at The Oppenheim Group and continue appearing on the show.

"I had just lost my dad that year, and now I was losing my husband and best friend, my teenage stepdaughter whom I no longer see but who still has a huge piece of my heart, and many of the friends who were his friends before we met. I ultimately decided I couldn't lose my job too," she says.

Stause writes that she still doesn't understand why Hartley didn't separate from her in private and wait to file for divorce the following month when shooting for "Selling Sunset" concluded. But, she adds, "what's done is done."

After filming on season three wrapped, Stause says she took several months to focus on self-reflection and therapy. In doing so, she says she came to understand that "adulting is realizing that there are two people in a relationship and owning your part in what went wrong." There's no benefit, she writes, in "being the victim and staying bitter."

Hartley did not respond directly to the Netflix show's portrayal of the divorce. However, while discussing online gossip and clickbait on an October 2022 episode of SiriusXM's "Radio Andy," he said, "You really can't just believe something because you read it."

"I've also sort of always had this view that ... I will have a public life, but I will be very private about my personal affairs," he said

Stause went on to date "Dancing With the Stars" professional Keo Motsepe before entering a relationship with her "Selling Sunset" costar Jason Oppenheim. However, they broke up in December 2021.

As for Hartley, the actor wed his third wife Sofia Pernas in May 2021. Prior to his relationship with Stause, he was married to Lindsay Hartley and shares a 17-year-old daughter named Isabella with the actress.

Stause's memoir, "Under Construction: Because Living My Best Life Took a Little Work," hits shelves on Tuesday, February 8.

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