Andy Cohen Hopeful Bethenny Frankel 'Will Come Back' to 'RHONY'

Andy Cohen thinks Bethenny Frankel's sudden exit from The Real Housewives of New York City might not be forever. The Watch What Happens Live host spoke opened up about the shocking news on Wednesday's episode of his SiriusXM radio show, Andy Cohen Live, and said he suspects Frankel might not be fully gone from the Bravo series.

Fans were heartbroken after Frankel announced in August her decision to leave the series ahead of Season 12, but Cohen was more positive about the news, recalling how the reality star was a founding member of the show in 2008 and previously left Season 3 and returned in Season 7.

"My overwhelming feeling about Bethenny leaving RHONY, and I told her this six weeks ago were she going to leave, that I am so grateful that she came back," Cohen said Wednesday, as first reported by PEOPLE.

"She already left is what we need to remember," he said. "We were so lucky to have these last seasons with her on it. And it was just so fun to have her back and she brought so much to the show that I just am living in the gratitude of her second return."

Cohen also kept Frankel's history with the show in mind as he wondered if she could possibly return in the future.

"I will hopefully live in the gratitude of her third return, because we are much like the mob — you can't get out," he continued. "I do hope and think that she will come back sometime."

"Who knows? She now, she's so still a part of everything that's still going on that you almost could see her dropping in and it's like, 'Oh my god. Okay! Bethenny's at a party! Bethenny's on this trip!' You never know," Cohen said. "I look forward to her in any capacity on the show and I'm just grateful that she was back."

Frankel shocked fans, and reportedly show producers, when she revealed in a statement to Variety on Aug. 22 that she would not be returning to RHONY this season.

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"I have decided to leave the Housewives franchise to explore my next chapter," Frankel said at the time. "It's time to move on and focus on my daughter, my philanthropy and my production partnership with Mark Burnett, producing and starring in shows which represent a shift in the conversation for women. With the changes in modern culture, I want to highlight the strength, confidence and unstoppable power that women have. My experience at Bravo has been an incredibly magical ride. I am so grateful to them for highlighting my entrepreneurialism and allowing me to pave the way for many women to achieve their goals. I am excited for my future. The best is yet to come."

The show reportedly did not have a replacement in place for Frankel, as the news broke the day filming started for the new season. The housewives expected to return for Season 12 include Tinsley Mortimer, Dorinda Medley, Sonja Morgan, Ramona Singer and Luann de Lesseps.

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