Raquel Leviss, 28, is speaking out following the news that she and Tom Sandoval, 39, have been hooking up for months even though he was in a nine-year relationship with their Vanderpump Rules co-star and her friend, Ariana Madix, 37. “I want to apologize for my actions and my choices foremost to Ariana, and to my friends and the fans so invested in our relationships,” Raquel told Entertainment Tonight. “There is no excuse, I am not a victim and I must own my actions and I deeply regret hurting Ariana.”
She continued, “I am reflecting on my choices, speaking to a counselor and I am learning things about myself such as my patterns of codependency and addiction to being and feeling loved. I have sought emotional validation through intimate connections that are not healthy without regard for my own well-being, sometimes negatively affecting others and often prioritizing the intimate connection over my friendships. I am taking steps to understand my behavior and make healthier choices.”
Raquel confirmed that she has started counseling to end her “unhealthy behavioral cycle” and “protect” her mental health. She also vowed to be a “better person” moving forward. In her statement, she also pointed out the pain she has dealt with amidst her reality television career, including receiving death threats, hate e-mails and having her privacy violated. She also claimed that she was physically assaulted.
The news of Raquel and Tom’s relationship broke on March 3, and the TomTom co-owner was seen entering Raquel’s apartment complex for a late-night rendezvous the following day. The pair had previously been together during the day to film for the hit Bravo series, according to TMZ. On March 6, Andy Cohen confirmed fans would get to see the fallout of Tom and Ariana’s relationship amid the cheating scandal play out during Season 10 of VPR, even though the season had already begun airing.
“You may have heard rumors that the cameras were up over the weekend. Yup, the cameras have been up on everyone getting reactions and filming,” he stated on his Sirius XM show, Radio Andy, as he addressed the breakup drama. “You will see this play out in a sense this season of Vanderpump Rules, before the reunion.”
He also teased that viewers will be blown away as Season 10 progresses because they already know what becomes of Raquel and Tom’s relationship. “First of all, when you watch the rest of the season of Vanderpump Rules with the overlay of knowing that Raquel and Sandoval — what’s happened with them, and what was possibly happening then — it’s really shocking,” he said. “Even Wednesday night’s episode, you’re not going to believe it. Watching it with this overlay…there’s a moment between Ariana and Raquel where you see where their friendship is, which is good, that you won’t believe.”
Tom briefly addressed the situation and admitted guilt via a March 5 Instagram post in which he apologized to the co-owners of his Schwartz & Sandy’s bar and restaurant (which includes co-star Tom Schwartz) and their employees. “Hey, I fully understand and deserve ur anger and disappointment towards me, but please leave Schwartz my friends and family out of this situation…” Tom wrote, addressing infuriated fans who might take their anger out on more than just him. “Schwartz specifically only found out about this very recently, and most definitely did not condone my actions. This was a very personal thing.”
“Also, Schwartz & Sandy’s might have my name on it, but also there are 3 other partners and 20 employees, who especially rely on the restaurant for income for them and their families,” he continued. “Please direct ur anger towards me and not them. They did nothing wrong.” He concluded by saying he’s taking a “hiatus” from the restaurant “out of respect” for his team and that he “needs time to address everything.” He did not mention Raquel or Ariana; however, he did follow-up with an apology to Ariana on Instagram on March 7.
At that point, Ariana had not addressed the situation, either, but plenty of her friends and co-stars had. Scheana Shay, 37, supported Ariana on social media by taking to Instagram to share a photo (seen here) of the pair smiling together on the carpet for Andy Cohen‘s Watch What Happens Live. “Always got your back!” she captioned the beautiful photo along with a “#TeamAriana” hashtag.
Former Vanderpump Rules star Kristen Doute — who may be returning to the show amid the cheating scandal — also showed that she’s Team Ariana by sharing an Instagram video of her kissing Ariana on the lips and cheek, as seen above. “I stan Ariana. This is in real time,” she said in the clip as Ariana rested her head on her shoulder. “I love you so much,” she added before giving her some comforting kisses. “I love you more than anything in the whole wide world, and I’ll kill people for you.”