Kyle Richards is explaining why she kept her daughters apart when they reunited at her house during the height of COVID-19 pandemic late last year.
On the most recent episode of the “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills,” viewers saw Richards’ daughter Sophia Umansky return home from her East Coast college as a surprise for her sister, Portia. The younger Umansky child broke down in (happy, hysterical) tears at the sight of her big sister, but she wasn’t allowed to get close to her.
Portia, who was practically hyperventilating over the sight of her sis on the front porch, repeatedly said, “I can’t breathe,” per Vulture. After she found out that Sophia had to quarantine before she could get close to her, Portia sobbed and said, “It’s even worse than having you in another state!”
In a confessional, Richards explained that her daughters would have to stay separated because Sophia had just traveled from another state. She also revealed how close the two are despite their seven-year age difference, and noted that when the family first dropped Sophia off at George Washington University for school, Portia cried the entire way home.
Richards Responded to Social Media Critics Who Blasted Her For Not Letting Her Reunited Daughters Hug
While the reunion was heartwarming, some social media followers questioned why Richards wouldn’t let an emotional Portia hug her sister.
On Instagram, one commenter wrote, “So sad how brainwashed these people are…like she just tested negative and she still can’t hug her and they are both young…”
When a Twitter user wrote, “Kyle not letting her children HUG was the most disgusting, unfathomable thing a parent could ever do to their children. Portia was hysterically crying to hug her sister, @KyleRichards you should be ashamed of yourself. Truly heartbreaking,” the Bravo star clapped back.
“Do you understand that this was 7 months ago and we had to wait until it was even ‘safe’ for Sophia to get on a plane to come home & that she HAD to quarantine?” Richards tweeted in response. “We are in a different place now.”
When the viewer called out Richards on Twitter for not letting her daughters hug even though “they will sleep under the same roof with the same air vents ventilating the entire household,” the “Real Housewives” star clarified the situation.
“She was coming from college,” Richards wrote. “Sophia was more worried about giving it than getting it.”
On her Instagram page, Richards also explained that the reunion took place at a time “when Portia was not seeing any friends and not leaving the house due to quarantine.”
“When I see it now it seems crazy that we couldn’t hug our own child because she had been on a plane & had to quarantine,” she wrote. “It makes me so sad & at the same time I feel so happy that my kids love each other so much.”
Other fans defended Richards and praised her for keeping her family as safe as she could during the height of the health pandemic in Los Angeles.
“Kyle was parenting her children. HER children. A mother should never be shamed for their parenting,” one fan wrote. “She was being responsible during a pandemic.”
Richards & Her Daughter Sophia Both Tested Positive For COVID-19
Despite the precautionary measures, COVID-19 did make its way into the Umansky household. In December, Richards posted a family Christmas photo to Instagram with the caption, “Some of you may have heard I have COVID. I got it after these photos were taken. Since I was diagnosed I have been separated from my family in order to keep them healthy. Unfortunately, Sophia also got it. We will stay in isolation until it’s safe to see the family and others again. I can’t wait to hug them.”
At the time, an insider told Entertainment Tonight that Richards and her sister Kathy Hilton, as well as their “RHOBH” co-star Dorit Kemsley all had COVID-19, which they believe they contracted after going to a cast luncheon. A “RHOBH” crew member also came down with the virus.
“Those closest to Kathy and Kyle have been so worried because everyone reacts so differently to this illness. Right now, they have fever and flu-like symptoms but of course, they need to be monitored because things can always take a turn for the worse,” the insider said at the time.
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