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Riley Burruss Shares What It's Been Like to Grow Up on RHOA and Show Fans "How Far I've Come"

Kandi Burruss' daughter opens up about sharing her life with RHOA viewers for more than a decade.

By Jocelyn Vena

As The Real Housewives of Atlanta fans know, Kandi Burruss joined the cast in Season 2 back in 2009. Once she did, viewers got to know the famed singer-songwriter and performer like never before. Along with getting to know Kandi better, fans also got to meet her family, including her young daughter, Riley Burruss.

Now 18 and in the middle of her freshman year at NYU with ambitions to someday go into law, Riley has grown up on TV, and fans have been there through it all. Bravo Insider recently spoke to Riley about that very experience.

"I feel like my favorite moments were moments I didn't even make it on air. So I don't know what's actually been on air that has been my favorite moment," Riley said about having a good half of her life filmed. "I think, of course, there were benefits [to being younger and having moments filmed] and, of course, there were a lot of things that I felt shocked about having realized just on TV all the time. But thankfully, I wasn't on it as much, especially when I was younger. There were some scenes which it, I feel like it's good to look back. I even see that there's a YouTube video where it's a compilation of me and my mom. So I like that it's that aspect where I can look back and just see me growing up. But, I feel like sometimes just having your life too much put on the spot can be a lot of, like, pressure."

However, there was a moment during the current Season 13 that Riley is happy made it to air. That moment? When viewers got to watch her move from her family home in Atlanta to New York City for college. "Well, I saw that scene and it was really sweet, especially when I was seeing Ace being sad he couldn't come with me," she reflected. "But it was definitely touching. My mom had, like, sent me a video of it. And it was kind of sad. But it was just good to see how far we've come, I guess, and how far I've come."

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Riley Burruss Heads to NYU!
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There is another young woman only a couple years older than Riley, Cynthia Bailey's daughter Noelle Robinson, 21, who has also grown up on Bravo. So viewers might be wondering what Riley's relationship with Noelle is like. Riley explained, "I only met her, like, a handful of times. But I haven't talked to [her]. We used to go to the same school, so I would occasionally see her then. But I think she's in L.A. now, and she's been been acting, so I haven’t seen her recently."

Riley said that among the cast and "friends of" that are in the RHOA group, Marlo Hampton offered to give her any advice should she need it: "She gave me her number, and she's always there for me to reach out, I would say. So I'd say if there's anyone who I feel like was the most open for me to call them up and be like, 'Hey, like, I need advice from this. So what do you think about that?' [it's Marlo]."

While Riley says she has not heard from viewers and young women around her age very often, there have been instances where she has because they have connected with her journey. "I have heard it with, of course, [with] some of the stuff, with the issues with my father. Then when it's an episode like that, then I'll get a lot of messages saying, 'Oh, this reminds me of myself when I was younger. This reminds me of my relationship with my father.' So I do get a lot of that when it's like situations like that," she said. "Definitely, I feel like it makes me feel more connected to other people who feel the same way and have gone through the same things. So of course it makes you feel like you're not alone. So that's a good thing about it."

With more than a decade of TV experience under her belt, Riley has realized this: "I think I've probably learned not to let other people judge what they don't truly know. So don't care too much about other people's opinions because, of course, they see you and have their own view of you in their head. So you can't just take that and be all sad about it. You just got to keep it moving."

While Riley has her goals set on a career in the entertainment business as a lawyer, she revealed if she would ever weigh a career spent as a future cast member on RHOA: "I don't know, possibly. I don't think I would be in Atlanta 10 years from now, but I think it would be interesting."

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