The Damage She Thought She Did To Me, Damaged Her More: Cynthia Pens Open Letter On NeNe Leakes

April 28, 2014  |  

Remember back in 2010, when Cynthia and NeNe were discussing that super weird friendship contract? They looked like they were going to be buddies forever, right? Well, you all know, as the two are in the midst of their drama, that this is not the case. Though it seems like Cynthia’s the one always running behind NeNe and forgiving her foolishness, NeNe tried to get her fired from the show, suggesting to Andy Cohen on “Watch What Happens Live” that Cynthia doesn’t add any value to the show. Trying to take food off her “friend’s” plate? Low down.

So how does Cynthia feel about this? Obviously, not too great and she’s letting the world know just what she thinks about Ms. NeNe Leakes in an open letter published on Uptown Magazine. She opened it like this, explaining why she’s writing the letter in the first place.

Since the airing of the “Watch What Happens Live” episode featuring my fellow “Real Housewives of Atlanta” cast member Nene Leakes that essentially gave her a platform to show how vindictive and vicious she can really be, I have been bombarded with questions and requests for interviews about my views on what really transpired between Nene and I, and why our friendship ended.

On how real their friendship was:

“The friendship you saw on camera between the two of us was genuine. We were very supportive of each other and talked every day. We even vacationed together outside of the show. In fact, when I joined the cast four seasons ago, I gravitated most towards Nene.” 

On the most challenging aspect of filming the show:

“The most challenging part for me has not been disagreeing with my husband on camera or finding out my family essentially considered sabotaging my impending wedding in my first season on the show or even the unfortunate argument with fellow cast member Kandi Burruss during the Pillow Talk party this season. In all honesty, it’s been watching someone who I thought was a friend first attack my husband and then attack me by suggesting I be fired from the show.”

Fans perceiving her as weak

Don’t let the pretty face fool you. I just choose my battles wisely, and prefer to get to a solution in a more appropriate and classy way. Frankly put, it’s just not who I am and I don’t respond that quickly in those types of extremely uncomfortable and volatile situations. In fact, I was completely stunned, and more than anything, I didn’t know how to respond in that moment.

B*tchgate and why their relationship really fell apart

The “bitch” incident was very disrespectful and a low point in our relationship. But as mature adults who genuinely cared about each other, we worked through the mess, and decided our friendship could survive. Don’t get me wrong; it was very difficult to forgive Nene for her harsh insult towards my husband because I would never refer to a friend’s husband in such a derogatory way. But we moved on.

We were all in a good place, or so I thought, until Nene felt that I was becoming too close to Kenya, “the enemy” as Nene referred to her on “Watch What Happens Live.” There is this ridiculous notion; of course being perpetuated by Nene, that Kenya and I have somehow become BFFs. Nothing could be farther from the truth. However, I am as friendly with Kenya as I am with Kandi Burruss, Phaedra Parks and Porsha Williams. What I will not do is stop being friendly, cordial, respectful or accommodating to people just because my friend or anyone else thinks I should. I don’t do petty. It’s not in my DNA.

Because I allowed Kenya to host a model call at BarOne, genuinely felt sorry for her when she lost her dog, and was seated next to her at the reunion, I am now somehow her best girlfriend. That’s absolutely ridiculous. Viewers will remember during her first season on the show, Kenya caused all kinds of confusion at my Bailey School of Fashion during a model search.  On and off camera we had conversations about the incident and her unfortunate behavior. She apologized, we ironed things out, and moved on. Never have I gone on any talk shows or interviews and suggested that Kenya lose her job. And as far as I know never has she in regards to me. I think it’s unprofessional, divisive and petty.

But that’s exactly what Nene did when she appeared on “Watch What Happens Live.” I have seen the very best of Nene Leakes, and I witnessed the very worst of her during this appearance. What she did and said was not coming from a good place, and was downright dirty. The damage she thought she was doing to me, in turn has damaged her image more.

As I continued to watch, I began to feel sad for her. There has to be some personal insecurities and unhappiness she is dealing with to lash out so viciously at me. Then it dawned on me. Nene is hurt that I have moved on. In the end, I am relieved that our friendship is over.

And she ends it with this jab:

Famed writer and poet Margaret Walker wrote, “Friends and good manners will carry you where money won’t go.” Maybe Nene should embrace this and make it her personal mantra.


Cynthia brings up some very salient points but once again, she’s writing an open letter instead of a.) speaking to NeNe in person. (Am I the only one who feels like Cynthia never says the right thing when NeNe’s in her face?) and b.) why is Cynthia so pressed at this point? I believe her. It seems that she truly believed NeNe was her friend. But she’s proven time and time again, that she really doesn’t have Cynthia’s best interests at heart…like at all. It’s so obvious that NeNe liked hanging with Cynthia because she perceived her as weak, someone she could control. This is not a friendship you need to mourn girl. NeNe is a hot mess, just keep it moving.

You can read Cynthia’s full letter over at Uptown.

What do you think about Cynthia’s open letter? Are you surprised she seems to be so effected by losing NeNe as a friend?

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