'The Real Housewives of Miami' star Alexia Nepola told PEOPLE about her BFF and costar Marysol Patton: "In real life, I have her back all the time"
Fans of The Real Housewives of Miami were shocked to see Alexia Nepola remain silent when her longtime friend Marysol Patton asked her to speak up for her during an argument with their costar Julia Lemigova on the show’s season 6 premiere.
But while speaking exclusively to PEOPLE at BravoCon 2023, Nepola maintained that she always supports her friend and there was a reason behind her staying quiet.
“I always have her back,” Nepola told PEOPLE of Patton, 56. “So let's start by that because in real life I have her back all the time. That night I was going through a lot of things myself and I had other things in my mind, so she knew that and she knows I always have her back.”
“And I wanted her to prove to herself that she can fight for herself,” Nepola, 56, continued. “She doesn't need me to fight, and she actually did really good job.”
“I was good,” added Patton. “It was great. I could see in her eyes that she wasn't even looking at me when I was saying, ‘Say something,’ and I could tell she was very distracted with the whole thing that Todd [her husband] wasn't there. It's not a big deal, but everyone is offended for me.”
This led to the beauty salon owner questioning Patton over occasions when she didn’t stick up for her, too.
“Hold on a minute, but what about when you haven’t had my back?” asked Nepola.
“S--- happens," laughed Patton.
“OK, now you know how it feels,” quipped Nepola.
During last week’s season premiere, Nepola got all of the girls together at her home for a “Nuevos Horizontes” (“New Horizons”) party so the group could start afresh following their heated season 5 reunion.
But while at the party, Lemigova said she was “surprised” to see Patton there as she had previously said she wouldn’t attend the event if their costar Adriana de Moura was also there.
“I feel I am also here to heal my best friend, but you are here to harm your best friend,” Lemigova, 51, told Patton.
“Julia, you’re saying weird s---,” interjected Patton. “I’m trying to harm Alexia? Alexia please speak. Come on!”
Speaking in a confessional, Nepola said, “Sometimes I feel like you have to fight your own battle.”
“Right now, I really need you my friend to step in,” added Patton in her own confessional as Nepola remained silent.
Addressing Patton, Lemigova continued, “You have this selfish attitude of putting, in my opinion, Alexia who is your best friend in this impossible situation where she has to choose. You said you’re not going to be here tonight if Adriana is here and now you’re here. You crawled back here when you heard that we’re all moving on.”
Patton shouted back at her, “I don't need to crawl, this is my best friend’s house, I’m invited here before all of you!”
“You are the problem in this group whether you like it or not,” added Lemigova.
Lemigova also opened up to PEOPLE over the weekend at BravoCon, addressing her disagreement with Patton and accused her of “hypocrisy.”
“It was supposed to be a party where everyone will be united and yet she did not want Adriana there and suddenly she shows up,” said Lemigova. “I had to speak up my truth. I found my voice, so to speak, this year.”
“I cut my hair, nothing scares me at all, especially after what Martina was going through,” she added of her wife Martina Navratilova, who overcame throat and breast cancer earlier this year. “So I'm not gonna sit back and watch Marysol's behavior like I did for two years.”
The former model added that she believes Patton has been “creating division in our group for quite a few years.”
As for whether or not she and Patton can heal their rift, de Moura told PEOPLE, “I went in literally wanting peace, I wanted to start fresh and rebuild our friendship, but I feel some resistance. I feel like Alexia was open to it but not Marysol. And like Julia said, Marysol was trying to tell Alexia what to do.”
For more of PEOPLE's BravoCon coverage, click here.
The Real Housewives of Miami airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET on Bravo, and the next day on Peacock.
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