She said that.
The Real Housewives of Atlanta‘s ninth season came to an explosive end on Sunday’s reunion part four, when Phaedra Parks admitted to telling Porsha Williams that Kandi Burruss and her husband Todd Tucker had planned on drugging Williams and their mutual friend Shamea Morton one night in order to take advantage of them sexually.
The revelation sent shockwaves through the RHOA cast and appeared to put a fracture in Parks’ tight friendship with Williams, who had come under flack for repeating the accusations throughout the season.
Problem was, Williams had only spread the claims because Parks told her the information had come first-hand from Burruss. But when the truth came out, Parks revealed she had only heard the information from an unnamed source.
“I repeated it because I heard it,” Parks explained. “Something was brought to me. I just repeated it. I repeated what someone told me. I’m not saying I didn’t say it. I’m saying I repeated it.”
That news brought Williams to tears, who thought she could trust the information she was getting from Parks implicitly.
“Oh Phaedra, that’s awful,” Williams said, sobbing. “Oh God, that’s so awful. I swear to God Kandi — I would never ever say something like that to you if it wasn’t told to me in truth in confidence.”
According to Williams, the drug rumors were first brought up by Parks during a private phone call between the two. Though Williams admitted it sounded far-fetched at the time, she claimed Parks backed it up again on two other phone calls — one, two days before Williams first addressed Burruss about the drugs, and another in the days before the reunion’s taping.
“You said first person. You said, ‘Kandi told me this.’ You said that she told you,” Williams told Parks. “You told me [Kandi] said it to you,”
“Do you understand how you have me looking in these streets? And how [Kandi] looks?” Williams continued. “This is not right. I would never lie on somebody and say something like that. I trust you as a friend. There’s nothing that I think you could tell me that would hurt me or damage somebody else … You had all these opportunities to tell me the truth!”
Though Parks maintained she didn’t remember telling Williams the information had come to her from Burruss first-hand, she later tried to make amends for the damage her words caused both Williams and Burruss.
“I shouldn’t have repeated it … I screwed up,” she said. “I’m sorry Porsha … I didn’t know if it was true or not … If something would have happened to you, I would have been a bad friend.
“I’m sorry — I can apologize, I’m sorry Kandi,” Parks continued. “I shouldn’t have repeated it. I’m sorry, it was bad judgement on my part. I’m sorry. I can’t change it.”
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She also stressed she wasn’t trying to use Williams to get back at Burruss. “I just repeated something, I wasn’t trying to use you Porsha,” she said. “I shouldn’t have repeated it — I shouldn’t have. I feel horrible. I hate that this happened. I’m sorry.”
Williams wasn’t in the forgiving mood though. “You have to understand how f—– up this is and how f—– up I look, standing by your side and holding you down because that’s the type of friend that I am,” she told Parks. “My heart is sunken right now. They never said nothing to deserve no s— like that and you know that.”
No matter how upset Williams was though, it was clear Burruss was the main victim here. In an emotional and raw speech,the Grammy winning singer/songwriter — who has always stayed away from drug usage — opened up about just how horrible the aftermath of the accusations have been.
“Do y’all know people would was under my comments saying #KandiAKABillCosby? Do you think that s— is f—— cool?” she said before storming off the stage in tears. “Y’all know how much I care about my business and my brand. We throw shade, whatever. But drugs? … Drugging somebody while drinking and taking them home is rape. Y’all accused me of being a f—— rapist. That is crazy.”
The rest of the cast was on Burruss’ side — calling Parks a liar and questioning why she, as an attorney, would repeat something without evidence.
Parks didn’t have a strong reason, admitting her claims wouldn’t hold up in court. “I made a rash decision,” she said. “I was not [lying]. I repeated it — you can’t retract something that was already in the air.”
Asked why she hadn’t owned up to being the source of the rumors when the topic came up during the Hawaii trip, Parks said she froze. “At that point I was like, ‘What do I say?’ ” — leading her castmates to believe if Williams hadn’t exposed Parks at the reunion, Parks never would have owned up to the truth.
So what about the other rumors about Burruss that Williams spread this season — like the claims that Parks had previously been in a seven-year relationship with a woman, owned a sex dungeon, and was being cheated on by her husband while he was in New York (under the pseudonym “Marvin”)? Parks was to blame… for some of it, at least.
“The part about the girlfriend, I heard that from the streets — from blogs and stuff like that,” Williams said. “But as far as that particular situation with Marvin, Phaedra told me that.”
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Host Andy Cohen spent a significant amount of time trying to get to the bottom of what Parks was feeling at the time she spread the drug accusations — pointing out to her that it would be understandable if she was hurt by some of the dirty laundry Burruss was exposing on the show, like her claim that Parks had been unfaithful in her marriage.
But even after admitting she was hurt by Burruss’ words, Parks never really said how she was feeling. “Obviously I didn’t think was going to happen like this,” she said by the episode’s end. “What more can I do? I apologized already … all I can do is apologize. I can’t obviously change what happened.”
Her apology was not accepted by Williams. “I feel betrayed … and completely taken advantage of,” she said. “You used that love from me … and until I can see that this is not a complete setup, that means [our friendship] was a lie and I was the pawn used to hurt Kandi. I don’t know if I’ll be able to move past this.”
After apologizing to Burruss herself, Williams vowed to stop reflecting her person pain on other people in the future. “I don’t want to that anymore. I want to acknowledge my part in any situation in the past. I don’t want to take part in that anymore.”
As for Burruss, she said she felt vindicated in the end. “I’m glad that that’s clear,” she said. “But overall? I’m kind of just disappointed.”