Lisa Rinna is speaking out amid backlash she received regarding an ill-fated tweet she sent to estranged Real Housewives of Beverly Hills co-star Lisa Vanderpump for her birthday back in September. Rinna caused controversy when she sent the Vanderpump Rules star a “pill-covered cupcake birthday tweet” just four months after Lisa’s brother, Mark, committed suicide by overdosing.
During an appearance on Watch What Happens Live, Rinna clarified her tacky tweet, explaining that she was unaware of the circumstances of Mark Vanderpump’s death and that the tweet was part of an ongoing “pill joke” she has with Lisa. In 2017, fellow RHOBH star Dorit Kemsley accused Rinna of having a pill problem after she whipped out a bag of pills from her purse and admitted that she occasionally likes to pop a Xanax into a smoothie. Rinna denied the accusations, and the women have been joking about it ever since.
“Let’s be really clear about this,” Rinna told Bravo host Andy Cohen, per People.“Lisa Vanderpump and I have a pill joke. She was part of the whole pill bag situation. We jab each other.”
“I did not know her brother had committed suicide — I had no idea. So the fact that a day after her birthday, nobody had wished her a happy birthday on Twitter, I actually felt bad and I thought none of the other women, nobody had, and I thought, ‘Well, that’s not cool. I’m going to wish her a happy birthday.’That’s my cheeky — you know, we have pill humor!”
Lisa Rinna Clarifies Tweet About Pills, 'Didn't Know' Lisa Vanderpump's Brother Died By Suicide https://t.co/jP1UMflKpL— People (@people) February 21, 2019
Rinna revealed that after she posted the tweet she was “eviscerated for it” and promptly reached out to Lisa Vanderpump to explain her mistake. The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star added that Lisa Vanderpump knows she meant no harm.
Lisa Rinna also took to Twitter to set the record straight months after the pill tweet story was rehashed on Watch What Happens Live, insisting that she would have never tweeted the pill cupcake had she known the full story about Vanderpump’s brother. Rinna also explained that she hadn’t seen Lisa Vanderpump for a long time when she posted the tweet and she added that her own sister died of a drug overdose decades ago.
I did not know her brother died of suicide. She never told me. I would never have tweet d the cupcakes if I had known. My own sister died of a drug overdose when I was 6. https://t.co/7WIbOs8cZP— lisa rinna (@lisarinna) February 20, 2019
We didn’t see Lvp for long, she stopped filming after Denise’s wedding. I did not know it was suicide. I reached out to Lvp immediately as soon as I found out how insensitive my tweet ended up being. https://t.co/PIwkzoUoFR— lisa rinna (@lisarinna) February 20, 2019
On the Season 9 premiere of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Lisa Vanderpump broke down when talking about her brother’s death. The SUR owner added that she does not believe her brother’s death was intentional, but rather a cry for help.
Vanderpump’s brother Mark was 59-years-old when he was found unresponsive at his home in Gloucestershire, England, on April 30. The professional DJ died after a suspected drug overdose on the same day as the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills Season 8 finale. At the time, several of Lisa’s restaurant employees and Vanderpump Rules co-stars posted condolence messages to her, according to Us Weekly.
You can see Lisa Rinna explaining her side of the tacky birthday tweet to Lisa Vanderpump in the Watch What Happens Live clip below.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741. For readers outside the U.S., visit Suicide.org or Befrienders Worldwide for international resources you can use to find help.