But as Southern Charm fans could see, their first time coming face-to-face since their confrontation at Patricia Altschul's Winter Ball in the season finale did not go very well. That's how Ashley felt about it, too. "I apologized for the things that I said. I shouldn’t have said them, I just shouldn’t have said them at all. Like, those are my feelings, and I should have kept them to myself," Ashley said. "I should have just kept my mouth shut. You know, if I had an issue I should have pulled Kathryn aside, I should have spoken to her in private. I don’t even know if that would have helped but I think about it, 'What if? What if I did do that?'"
At the reunion, Ashley made it clear that she wasn't sorry for feeling the way she did about Kathryn C. Dennis, however. "I’m not apologizing for saying what was on my heart," she told The Daily Dish. "Or what I believed to be true."
She's not exactly ready to take any of her comments about Kathryn back, either, not until they sit down and have a conversation, just the two of them, at least. "I’d like to sit down and speak to her. And I know she’s gonna say I’m crazy, and that’s not true," Ashley explained. "I guess I just want to be heard, and I guess I was just hoping that she would just take some accountability for some of the things because there are some things that I do see in my private life that I don’t need to hear from Kathryn that I know are right, and I don’t want to get into that because I know that’s what got me into trouble the first time."
One topic that Ashley would especially like to discuss with Kathryn one-on-one is the moment Kathryn said that she doesn't want her to be around her children because she feels "uncomfortable" with it. "I would hope that we could sit together and have lunch and talk about the kids. I’d love nothing more than that, but I also think that that is very hopeful of me, and I don’t think that’s very realistic," she shared. "I have to be respectful, even with something like taking a picture with the kids, I have to be respectful of her in that way and just realize that these are her children, and that although they are part of my life, I’m not the mom."
As someone whose parents got divorced when she was younger, Ashley said she knows what it's like to grow up with parents that aren't together. "There’s a picture of Thomas and Kathryn in Kensie’s room, and I left it because Kensie would want that picture in her room. I always had a picture of my mom and dad on my bedside table," she said. "I know it’s a tough thing. I come from a broken family, and I do respect that."
Ashley believes that if Kathryn knew more about the challenges she faced upon moving to Charleston, from her struggle in getting her nursing license to being so far away from all of her friends and family, it could have helped foster a better understanding among them. "It’s hard to go back and watch something from so many months ago, and even I forgot things I said or things I did, and then I just look at myself and I think, 'That’s a very scared girl. That’s a girl that was kind of thrown into something,'" Ashley said, adding that this season she felt like "a frightened girl that didn’t know what she was getting herself into."
Kathryn has actually said something similar about her Season 1 self. She was was only 21 years old when she started seeing Thomas Ravenel at the very beginning of the series. "It's so funny, like, Season 1 Kathryn, yeah, that was a whole different person. I was such a child," Kathryn told The Daily Dish before the taping of the Southern Charm Season 5 reunion, adding that she didn't know people were "even capable of certain things" back then. "I kind of wish I was a little more prepared for the world in that sense."
Ashley acknowledged that she and Kathryn may actually have more similarities than differences in that way. "The thing me and Kathryn have in common is we both sort of started this relationship on the show... If you think about it, Thomas and I were still starting to get to know each other, [just like] Kathryn and Thomas were getting to know each other on air," Ashley shared. "Yes, I do relate to her in that sense."
Ultimately, Ashley said that she's hopeful that she and Kathryn can be on better terms in the future. But there's one thing that needs to happen on Kathryn's end before the two can get there, according to Ashley. "As long as Thomas and I are together, I hope we can, but she needs to take us more seriously before she really gives me a chance because she’s like, 'Why would I have a sit-down with you if you’re going to be gone next week?'" Ashley said. "In my perfect world, I would sit down and talk with her, absolutely, yes. But that’s me, and that’s not always realistic. And I don’t like to have enemies, and I don’t like being on bad terms. I mean, I’m a fixer, I’m a nurse, I like to make things better, and I don’t like this, knowing that someone doesn’t like me, I don’t like that really, I don’t. Because I don’t think I am that person, and maybe if I am, I just have to work on myself too, which I would. But I haven’t had that opportunity to make it right. I’d just really like the chance to be heard."
Ashley reflects more on the Southern Charm Season 5 reunion, below.