The comments in question — “What happened? You were much thinner than this. You gained a little bit of weight. You have to work on it. Seriously, I’m telling you as a friend. It’s out of control now. I can tell,” said Lee — ended up making Maloney cry while recounting the conversation to Vanderpump.
“I found [Maloney’s reaction] kind of weird,” Lee told Page Six on Tuesday. “It was a funny kind of joke that I made. I had known her for a while. I thought it would be fun to say things like that to her.”
According to the outlet, Lee insisted that he “said it like a friendly comment” and that he felt the exchange “got out of hand.”
“I didn’t realize until she really reacted really badly,” he said. “I feel so bad. It wasn’t bad intentioned at all. It was something like, ‘Oh my God, you look a little different than I expected. I haven’t seen you in a while.’ She got really upset.”
Lee, who claimed he has seen Maloney since the incident and made it clear that he wasn’t intentionally trying to upset her, added: “She’s very sensitive these days.”
In a confessional during Monday’s episode, Maloney revealed that she’s struggled with her confidence for a while: eight years ago, she fell 25 feet through a skylight, down a flight of stairs. In a video filmed after the incident, her jaw is wired shut, she’s missing teeth, and there’s a gash in her chin that fans will recognize as the source of her scar — which she’s declined to get removed by a plastic surgeon as a badge of honor after this life-changing accident.
“Everything’s been put in perspective,” she said in the video. “When you cheat death, you can’t help but look at thing differently.”
Later, she addressed Lee’s comments to her friends: “I’ve worked really hard on positive body image and accepting myself and also trying to be healthy and trying to be more in shape and feel good. So it’s a bit of a slap in the face.”
Vanderpump Rules airs Mondays (9 p.m. ET) on Bravo.