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RHOP Monique Samuels Headshot

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In early July, “Real Housewives of Potomac” star Monique Samuels released her new single, “Drag Queen.” The timing was perfect. With the premiere of season five just days away, the cheeky lyrics got people thinking about her tumultuous relationship with friend-turned-foe Candiace Dillard, which eventually resulted in a physical altercation. An altercation that will play out this season. Don’t get it twisted, though. Samuels says that “Drag Queen” is most certainly not a diss track. Instead, she shares that the song served as a form of therapy and an anthem about encouraging yourself and reinforcing boundaries with others.

“I needed an outlet and music has always been an outlet for me,” Samuels told Madame Noire. “That’s always been like a nice little outlet for me. This past season, filming the season was very stressful. I just needed some way to relieve that stress and I went pen to pad and, and started just writing all of my thoughts and just how I feel about everything that had gone on during the season while we were filming. And then, also just like reminding myself of who I am as a person and I made up a nice little song.”

As you may recall, Dillard pressed charged against Samuels over the fight. Samuels responded by filing charges as well. Both cases were eventually dropped by the state’s attorney.

“I finally was able to close that chapter. I recorded this song back in January. So it was after the state’s attorney dropped both of the cases and the complaints that were filed. I just, I’ve needed to put it to bed and I also needed to turn a negative into a positive and what better way to do that than to make something that’s like an anthem but also a little fun shade.”

The reality star admits that the title was inspired by one of her more popular reality television moments. You know, the one in which she promised to “drag” Dillard while pregnant.

“Obviously, when I first started writing it, the name of what I was writing wasn’t ‘Drag Queen,’ it was just me writing,” the New Jersey native shared. “Once I got to the hook, I wanted something that people could hear and they think about some of my time that’s been on the show, and one of the moments that happened during season four was the whole, ‘I’ll drag you pregnant at all.’

It’s expected that Dillard will be offended by the track when she hears it, but Samuels suspects that she won’t be the only one.

“Obviously, when you hear the title, some people get the snarky tone behind it. But most of when you listen to the lyrics, it’s kind of me just encouraging myself and reminding myself of what I stand for and what I don’t stand for,” she said. “I’m just repeating the boundaries that I’ve already set. Now, if people listen to the song and they take offense to it, in some way, any member of my cast, then that’s their issue. So you know, of course, I’m gonna throw little digs in there but those digs can apply to anybody on the show because that’s just how I am as a person. l let you know my boundaries are. I don’t just come messing with you for no reason. If you come to mess with me, then you’re going to have a problem.”

On the surface, it appears that Samuels and Dillard’s beef is just reality stars doing what reality stars are paid to do. However, upon closer inspection, it seems that their friendship fell apart for the same reason that many others do: accountability. The relationship between the women began to slip into more contentious territory when Samuels spoke up for fellow co-star, Ashley Darby, who had experienced a pregnancy loss.

The Real Housewives of Potomac - Season 5

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“One thing my pastor used to say, ‘A true friend confirms, confronts, and celebrates.’ We have to be able to do all three of those. I can’t just celebrate you and confirm you and see you doing something that I’d take personally and not confront you about it because a well-rounded friendship should have all of that. And for her to go in on a person, whether she’s my friend and not, and I’m speaking about Ashley, whether she’s my friend or not, what you’re attacking her about deals with something that I’ve dealt with. And it’s something that Candace had never dealt with. So, you can’t go there because she speaking from experience and so am I, and that’s all I was trying to explain to her, ” said Samuels. “When it deals with pregnancy or miscarriage and all of those things, like you can’t question that, especially when you’ve never been on that journey. I’ve had a miscarriage. I know what that feels like. So, at the end of the day, I’m just trying to like let her know as a friend like you a little crazy right now. All of us in the circle are moms or have experienced pregnancy. She was the only one who hadn’t. So I’m like, you’re stepping into territory that you don’t know anything about and you need to like chill out and she didn’t like it. So it was the beginning of me kind of accepting like okay, this must just be who she is as a person. And then you’ll even see as the season air this season how I was able to really just take her for who she is and it’s like. You know what, I’m not gonna make you something that you aren’t. I’m just gonna watch you and observe your actions, and then I’m gonna adjust how I deal with you and that’s what I did.”

Samuels went on:

“I guess when I first met Candice my thoughts on her as a woman, I thought more of her than what she deserves and I didn’t realize how you know how childish she was. I said it even in season four with the whole fight on the farm and I was like, ‘Oh, I get it now.’ It was like it that one point that’s when I finally got it I was like she just wants yes people. She just wants people around her who just agree with everything she does, coddle her, and say, ‘Yes, you’re right.’ I am not that chick. Never have. Never will be and won’t start doing it now because of you. So I pretty much did let her know like, this is how I  am with my friends.”

It seems that a similar issue plagues Samuels’ relationship with Gizelle Bryant — a relationship that was clearly doomed before it ever got started.
“I just think that Gizelle is just a miserable person and I think that she has a lot of things in her life that she needs to confront and deal with. And yeah, and, and I just think that, like for me, whatever she sees in me, it really bothers her,” said the mother of three.  “It doesn’t matter what I say or do. It doesn’t matter if we get on a good foot or not. She’s always going to have an issue with me because she has so many issues with herself that she has to deal with. So and I’m a very direct person I don’t hold any punches like I’m not insecure. I’m very sure of myself so you know, I’m just not going to tolerate anybody’s BS And one thing about Gizelle is she likes having friends that she can control and she likes having friends that she can bully and pick on and, and, and then they do nothing about it. That will never happen with me. That’s why you see the tension between even her and Karen. You know, the people who she tries to pick with, who stand up to her and say no, I’m not tolerating this. Those are the same people that she has an issue with. So and she likes, you know she likes to have minions.”
The Real Housewives of Potomac - Season 4

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As for Samuels’ family life, things are looking up. Previous issues with her mother-in-law, Shirley Samuels, has been quelled and the two are on much better terms.

“We’re cordial. My door has always been open. My home is always open. So I think now it’s more so that she’s making a choice to walk through the door. We’re able to kind of move forward. It’s not like we just like, pick up the phone and just talk like I would my own mom but we’re in a good enough place where she never has to question or wonder if coming here is a safe space for her,” said Samuels. “I think she finally got to the point where she let her guard down and she can see that, you know, like her son married a loving wife and we have three beautiful children. And if you want to be a part of this, then get on the bus. Same as on the show, I’m not gonna be bullied. I’m not going to be taken advantage of. I’m not going to be disrespected. So it doesn’t matter who you are. I don’t care how old you are. Just because you’re older than me doesn’t mean that you can disrespect me, cause I respect you. You know, it is a two-way street. So I think we finally, we’re able to get to a point where she realized that being family and being around her grandkids and her son and, and being happy is more important than trying to start mess.”

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