What happened between Leigh-Ann and Ben after Below Deck?

Leigh-Ann Smith and Ben Willoughby from Below Deck Season 10.
Leigh-Ann Smith and Ben Willoughby have finally opened up about their relationship. Pic credit: Peacock

Leigh-Ann Smith and Ben Willoughby shed light on what happened after the cameras stopped rolling on Below Deck Season 10.

Ben was part of the show from the beginning, immediately getting into a boatmance with Camille Lamb.

However, after Camille got fired and Leigh-Ann joined the St. David crew, Ben’s head was turned thanks to his connection to the new stew.

Ben and Leigh-Ann had not met before, but they matched on Tinder and DM’ed for a while.

Despite Ben’s attraction to Leigh-Ann and her pursuing him, nothing other than a few kisses happened due to his commitment to Camille. They met up in the Dominican Republic after the show.

Following the Below Deck Season 10 finale, Leigh-Ann has come out with some harsh words for Ben and his treatment towards her once filming wrapped.

Leigh-Ann Smith puts Ben Willoughby on blast for post-Below Deck actions

Taking to Instagram, Leigh-Ann posted several slides with context speaking her truth about what went down with Ben. Leigh-Ann explained how they via social media in June 2021, calling their online connection “magical.”

The blonde beauty didn’t meet Ben until they met aboard the St. David, admitting her feelings for him were stronger than ever. She also made it clear they had been talking the entire time, so she had no idea he was involved with Camille.

Leigh-Ann maintains Ben continued to show interest in her amid filming, but she backed off when he opted to stay loyal to Camille and his trip with her to DR. Things got tricky, though, when Ben reached out to Leigh-Ann after things went awry between Camille and him.

“I happened to be in Miami at the time so we decided to link up. We decided to rent an apartment and lived together for just over a month in FL,” she wrote. “Spending each day together (As you can see in this video clip) I was there for him as he was getting through his breakup and was a shoulder to lean on. I did everything I could to put a smile on his face every day even though it was killing my mental health. We also spoke about working and traveling together and Ben possibly coming to SA with me.”

The Bravo personality went on to reveal that they spoke even when she went back to South Africa. However, when Below Deck hit Bravo airwaves, Ben spotted all contact with her.

Leigh-Ann believes she deserves an explanation for his actions. She spoke poetically about coming to peace with things and not getting an answer, as Leigh-Ann shared some advice to fans.


It turns out that Leigh-Ann’s IG post was the thing to get Ben to respond to her.

Ben Willoughby reacts to Leigh-Ann Smith’s IG post

Using his Instagram Stories, Ben responded to what Leigh-Ann said about their relationship and what happened when Below Deck Season 10 ended.

“I had to cut her out of my life as my mental space was taking a toll. I needed space to actually have my own thoughts, make my own decisions in stead of someone trying to force me to fall for them,” he wrote. “I felt like I was gaslighted into thinking I was wrong for loving Camille and that’s not what someone who says they have [your] best interest at heart would do.”

Ben ended his words by acknowledging that he did what was best for him and his happiness, and he doesn’t regret being selfish.

Ben IG response to Leigh-Ann
Ben shares his side of the Leigh-Ann story. Pic credit: @wanderingwilloughby/Instagram

There’s still some drama left over from Below Deck Season 10. Unfortunately, fans won’t see Ben Willoughby and Leigh-Ann Smith hash things out at the reunion because it’s been canceled.

Below Deck is currently on hiatus. Seasons 1-10 are streaming on Peacock.

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