Nene Leakes of The Real Housewives of Atlanta is sounding off on the second season drama of her show. Nene has seen her popularity decline this season amidst her behavior on the show, which shows her as bullying others and having an over-sized ego. In her interview with Essence, Nene talks about the meeting with her alleged father, why she and Kandi’s relationship turned sour and her relationship with the other Atlanta housewives.
Below are excerpts from Nene’s new interview :
ESSENCE.COM: So, Miss Nene, you finally met your alleged father, whose reception didn’t appear that warm. Have you two remained in touch?
NENE: It was warm enough because we are strangers. I wouldn’t expect him to hug me. He was very nervous with the cameras around. It took the producers about an hour to convince him to sign the release forms. I was hoping and praying that he didn’t, but I guess after they talked to him for so long he finally gave in and that’s why he wouldn’t allow us in the house. Had it just been me and my uncle he would have. I haven’t seen him since then, but I’ve spoken to him. And I still haven’t taken a paternity test but I believe he’s my father. At some point I can do a DNA test but there’s a part of me that doesn’t want to know the truth. I just needed to meet him and have some closure.
ESSENCE.COM: Understood. Let’s switch gears a bit. Since the sudden death of Kandi’s fiancé AJ, are the “Housewives” closer?
NENE: No, not really. Nobody has seen each other. I’ve talked to Sheree and Lisa and saw everyone at the funeral. We put our differences aside to be at the funeral so we could be there for Kandi because we aren’t that bitter. As far as us being friends, we won’t ever be friends. I’ve known Sheree the longest; I still talk to Lisa, but our relationships are what they are. Honestly, I think if we hadn’t been on this we wouldn’t be this bitter with one another, and it’s definitely made it a lot worse.
ESSENCE.COM: Do you think you ever gave Kandi a fair chance?
NENE: I feel like i did. On my behalf, I didn’t reach out to her when she first joined the cast to welcome her because that’s just not me. I wasn’t looking for anything; I figured like, if we get along we do and if we don’t, it is what it is. The first time Kandi and I met was never shown on the show. We had a couples’ night out where we went salsa dancing and had dinner with me and my husband, Lisa and Ed [Hartwell] and then Kandi and A.J. We had fun, but the viewers never got to see us having a good time.
ESSENCE.COM: Kim suggested that you were an instigator and believed that your absence at Kandi and A.J.’s engagement party ensured a drama-free evening. Do you consider yourself a trouble maker?
NENE: How crazy is it that they were in the same restaurant where Sheree pulled Kim’s hair and now the two of you are throwing Kandi an engagement party? Secondly, Kim had a disagreement with me, Lisa, and Sheree but I’m the troublemaker? (Laughs.) Obviously, Kim had to have someone to latch on to because she’d already gotten into it with all of us, so of course she gets friendly with Kandi, who helped her out with the song.
ESSENCE.COM: Kim also shared the story with Kandi about you choking her. Is that true?
NENE: I’m not bitter and evil that I would go out and have violent attacks. Now, if you mess with me then you better back up, but leave me alone and I’m fine. I just realize that the only people I can truly count on are my family and friends who really know who I am. The viewers have been given the wrong perception of me. I’m still the fun-loving-tell-it-like-it-is woman I’ve always been.