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Monique Samuels Looks Back At Her Fight With Candiace Dillard! Monique Admits To Being At Fault And Explains Why She Felt That She Was ‘Egged On’ By Her RHOP Co-Star — Candiace Responds!

Monique Samuels looks back on her fight with Candiace Dillard. Samuels says the fight that transpired between herself and Dillard on The Real Housewives of Potomac was deeper than just the deterioration of their friendship. 

“She took a beating for 36 years of built up frustration," Monique told PEOPLE of the physical altercation that aired earlier this season. Watching the incident back, Samuels says she feels "absolutely remorseful" and "completely foolish." “It wasn't just about [Candiace] that night,” Samuels explained.

"Once it became physical, my response was that of defending myself, but also that pounding was for every person that has ever done anything to me.” “For that, I just felt like, 'Wow, [Candiace] didn't deserve all of that,' ” says Samuels, who adds: "I do not excuse my actions. I take full ownership of my part in the altercation.”

While she admits to being at fault, Samuels does feel that she was “egged on.” “I was not trying to engage her. I was already at the point where I realized she's not the person who I thought she was," Samuels says. Samuels says she remembers saying, “I'm through with her,” and believes that may have been what set Dillard off. 

“She starts coming closer and then that hand comes right next to my chin and instantly, now that I look back, that was definitely a trigger. I don't like hands in my face. I said, 'Get your hand out of my face' and 'You need to back up,' but she did not. That's when she starts saying, 'You gone drag me?' Where I grew up, if you don't want to engage in a fight and a person says back up, then you back up. That's where the tone changed. She egged me on with that question, and I returned it by touching her hair, which I shouldn't have done. That definitely escalated things.” 

At the time of the incident, Samuels thought that Dillard pushed her, but later realized it was Bryant trying to innocently separate them. “I didn't know that was Gizelle. I thought that was Candiace, so I'm thinking, 'now I'm grabbing.' So as I grab her, and then she hits me in the face with the wine glass and wine splashes me, that moment is when I blacked out,” Samuels shared. “My body just took over. I went into shock.” 

She was later told that Dillard did not hit her with a wine glass. However, Samuels is still confused as to why she ended up with a busted lip.

“I was told by certain people in production that the wine glass didn't happen. What they didn't understand was that my lip wasn't cut with a sharp glass, my lip was busted from the impact of blunt force against my face. ... Glasses were flying left and right and everyone asks why didn't I let her go,” says Samuels.

“I couldn't even hear,” Samuels says, explaining her reason for holding on to Dillard as her castmates screamed for her to stop. “My whole entire being was in a state of shock [and] I didn't let her go because when I finally snapped out of it, [Candiace] was still throwing glasses.”

“People ask why you went back after her and I'm like she's literally yelling, 'She's fired, right?' That made me feel she did this on purpose. You didn't expect the fight would happen but you created this and took it to a whole other level and the first thing you say is, 'She's fired?' I'm like okay, she wants me to be fired. Then let me go and finish this,” says Samuels.

Having seen Dillard threaten violence previously also made Samuels feel on guard. “I've seen her with a knife in her hand,” Samuels said of Dillard pointing a knife at Ashley Darby last season. “I've seen her almost fight her husband to get someone. I saw parts of the reunion that didn't air when her and Ashley were arguing and she jumped off the couch and told her, 'You better shut your mouth before I come over and shut it for you.' I've seen her in action, so if we're having this verbal altercation and I say back up, I don't know what's next.”

Meanwhile, Candiace responded to Samuels’ claim about being “egged on.”

“If me ‘egging’ Monique on in a verbal altercation is Monique‘s justification for physically attacking me, does that mean that I was within my rights to physically attack her at Ashley‘s dinner when I was trying to speak and she chose to talk over and taunt me like a five year old?” By my standards, no,” she in a statement to PEOPLE. This is a 37-year-old woman attempting to use a mutual verbal spat to justify barbaric behavior. I will never understand. Furthermore, after I was grabbed by my hair and yanked down onto a table, anything that I did to defend myself against a grossly emotionally deficient woman is my business and her consequence.”

Photo Credit: Bravo; Getty Images