Her side of the story. Raquel Leviss spoke out for the first time on Wednesday, March 8, five days after news broke that her affair with Tom Sandoval ended his nine-year relationship with Ariana Madix.
“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,” the 28-year-old Vanderpump Rules star began in a statement to Entertainment Tonight. “There is no excuse, I am not a victim and I must own my actions and I deeply regret hurting Ariana.”
Leviss noted that she is “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” in light of the scandal.
“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,” she continued.
Leviss went on to address her decision to take legal action against her Bravo costars. After TMZ reported that her team sent notices to the cast over a recording of Leviss and Sandoval that was “done illegally without Raquel’s knowledge or consent,” Us Weekly confirmed that she filed an order of protection against Scheana Shay amid rumors that the “Good As Gold” singer got physical with Leviss when she learned about the affair on March 1.
“Although I chose to be on a reality show accepting the good and bad that comes with it, beyond my own actions I have been physically assaulted, lost friendships, received death threats and hate emails in addition to having had my privacy violated,” she wrote. “I have begun counseling to end my unhealthy behavioral cycle, learn to set stronger emotional boundaries and learn to protect my mental health. I don’t expect sympathy, understanding or forgiveness.”
Leviss concluded: “Right now I must focus on my own health and well-being and as I strive to be a better person moving forward, I will prioritize my mental health and learn from my mistakes.”
The SURver’s words come hours after Sandoval publicly apologized to Madix. He previously came under fire after his first statement didn’t acknowledge his longtime love, but rather asked fans to think twice before coming for his restaurants and business partner Tom Schwartz.
“I want to first and foremost apologize to everyone I’ve hurt through this process. Most of all, I want to apologize to Ariana,” he wrote on Tuesday, March 7, via Instagram. “I made mistakes, I was selfish and made reckless decisions that hurt somebody I love. No one deserves to feel that pain so traumatically and publicly. I can only imagine how devastating this has been for Ariana and everyone around us. I feel really horrible about that. My biggest regret is that I dishonored Ariana. I never meant to disappoint so many people, including our loving families and friends.”
Sandoval and Madix started dating in 2014, with their romance being documented on seasons 3-10 of Vanderpump Rules.
“My love for Ariana was stronger than any camera could ever have captured. Some of our best times together were never filmed,” he wrote. “The same goes for some of our biggest struggles.”
He concluded: “The choices I made hurt so many people. I acted in a way that clashes with who and how I want to be. I will continue to reflect and work on myself. I have work to do. I always have, and I always will.”