Ashley Jacobs didn’t exactly become a fan favorite after joining the cast of Southern Charm as the girlfriend of Thomas Ravenel and during a new interview, she opens up about how she dealt with a number of hurtful rumors against her, including allegations of being a gold digger and an escort.
“I wasn’t prepared for all the hate,” Ashley told PEOPLE during a phone interview. “I’d watch it back with Thomas and be like, ‘That’s not how I meant it. I look so bad. I didn’t mean to come off like a gold digger! I’m not the gold digger.’ Or, ‘I don’t ask for your credit card. Thomas, that’s not who you are!’”
“If you understood my personality, you’d know that I’m very sarcastic,” she continued. “I like to get a reaction, I like to make people laugh — I think it’s funny. I stir it up a little bit. And I was more doing it for a reaction. I didn’t think it would be taken that seriously.”
Ashley has been dating Thomas since 2017 and throughout their romance, she and Kathryn have had a tumultuous relationship with one another and during one episode, Ashley lashed out at Kathryn for being a bad mom to her two kids with Thomas, four-year-old Kensington and two-year-old Saint Julien. She even labeled Kathryn as an “egg donor” as Thomas looked on.
“My biggest problem is wanting to defend my character,” she explained. “Because I’m not that person they say I am. I felt provoked and in hindsight, like with Kathryn, I wish I had just said my apologies and walked away. But I can get heated, and I can get angry.”
During the finale episode of Southern Charm season five earlier this month, after being blasted by her co-stars and viewers of the show for her poor treatment of Kathryn, Ashley was accused of being an escort.
“It’s on national television,” Ashley said of the shocking scene. “You know, my family sees it, my friends see it. They know who I am, and it couldn’t be more opposite. I have worked my ass off my whole life. I wouldn’t have gotten into nursing [if I was just with Thomas for his money]. I still wouldn’t be working. This is what I wanted to do. I’m paying my bills right now. … People don’t see how hard I work. I wish they could follow me into my work every day.”
After a hard fifth season of the show, Ashley continued to face challenges with Bravo as her boyfriend, Thomas, was kept away from filming on the reunion due to the sexual assault allegations he’s currently facing. Understandably, Ashley said it was hard to face-off with her co-stars without her partner at her side.
“There are things he could explain that they would have a better understanding than me trying to explain it,” she said. “Like, ‘She’s not a quitter, she’s does the work, I’m the one who brings up marriage more than she does.’ I need it from him. If I said it from my mouth, they’d be like, ‘Yeah, right.’ ”
“He was frustrated too,” Ashley added of the ongoing rumors they’ve faced. “He goes, ‘That’s not it. That’s not fair. How does she get to speak up, say that, and I can’t tell my truth?’ ”
Prior to filming the Southern Charm season five reunion, Ashley also revealed her thoughts going into the dramatic taping, sharing that her biggest regret this season is her temper.
“I know what I’ve done this season and I know what’s coming at me,” Ashley told The Daily Dish. “You take accountability … that’s what I’m nervous about, because they have every right to feel that way … I react too quick … I could be loving and sweet and caring, as a nurse, and then I could be angry, I could be emotional, I feel every feeling, but the one — anger — shows a temper and that’s not one I’m necessarily proud of. And so that’s something I need to work on and the show’s really shown me that.”
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