The Real Housewives of New York fans have learned so much about Tinsley Mortimer's family life this season. First, Tinsley's mother Dale Mercer blessed us with a multi-episode appearance earlier this season. And now, during the April 17 episode, Tinsley Mortimer's father was the center of conversation as she and Luann talked about addiction and alcoholism.
Tinsley revealed that her father was an alcoholic and had died just three years ago, much to Lu's surprise. Then Tinsley got into some intense specifics. She recalled, "He was drinking a lot and he ended up falling downstairs, had frontal lobe damage, and ended up going into a coma." She explained that he eventually ended up in hospice, where he died, since there was "nothing" the family or doctors could do for them.
And then she explained why she chose to open up to the Countess. Tinsley confessed, "I had never been around somebody who has had a drinking issue since my father died and recently being around you is bringing up stuff with my dad."
She wondered out loud, "Why do we have to walk on eggshells around this person who has chosen to have a drink?" Then she broke down into tears and declared, "I'm angry at him. I'm so angry at him." During on-camera interview, Tinsley added, "When I see somebody else having a drinking problem, I find myself pushing back from it only because when you watch somebody continually choose it, and you think it's choosing it over you, I just have a different perspective."
When questioned by Luann, Tinsley told her that she's "angry at him for dying over drinking." Luann also tried to explain that alcoholism is a disease and that addicts aren't "choosing" substance abuse, but Tinsley struggled to understand the concept. Eventually Luann offered to go with Tinsley to Al-Anon, a support group for family and friends of alcoholics, to help her work through some of her issues.
This wasn't the first time that Tinsley mentioned her dad on the show, but it was definitely the most emotional. During her first season back in 2017, Tinsley's mom Dale brought her father George Mercer's ashes to New York City. In a Bravo blog post from that year, Tinsley explained, "It might seem strange to some, but we really like having his ashes with our family. We simply are not ready to bury him yet. Dad travels to Palm Beach for the winter and to Newport for the summer with occasional stops in Virginia. It's just nice still having him around."
Of course, George is missed by his family, but was also a very high profile person in his time. According to his obituary from Palm Beach Daily News, he passed away on March 26, 2015 in Providence Rhode Island after living in Richmond, VA and Palm Beach, Florida. He was a very active member of many board and associations in both Palm Beach and Richmond.
He was a principal in Mercer Rug and Carpet Co. He also worked at a real estate investment firm before becoming an architectural consultant. Before that, he was a part of the Coast Guard Reserves after he graduated from the University of Georgia.
Tinsley's father just passed away in 2015. It makes sense that she is still processing the loss, especially since she returned to New York City for the first time in years shortly after. It's been an adjustment period; Hopefully she, along with some help from her friends, can work through her grief soon.