Not a big deal? 90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days star Ed “Big Ed” Brown defended the 31-year age gap between him and his girlfriend, Rosemarie “Rose” Vega, and explained why it didn’t bother him that he was old enough to be Rose’s father.

“I never thought of her as this young girl. She just became this single mother that I wanted to help,” Ed, 54, told “The Night Time Show Podcast” host Stephen Kramer Glickman. “The first conversation we had was, ‘Look, Rose, I’m 54. I’m old enough to be your dad.’ And she’s like, ‘Well you’re actually one year older than my dad.’ And I’m like ‘Oh my God, so great let’s just be friends.’ And she’s like ‘No, age is just a number.’ I’ll never forget that. You know, age is just a number.”

The San Diego native documented his journey to meet Rose, 23, for the first time in person in her native country of the Phillippines on season 4 of the hit TLC series. Even though they seemed to hit it off early on, they quickly started to experience issues in their relationship.

They got into their first fight after Ed asked Rose to take an STD test before they consummated their relationship — but he got backlash from fans after he refused to do the same. “My heart was in the right place, but I didn’t do that correctly. I didn’t do that right, and that’s just one of many,” Ed said during the podcast.

Ed agreed that Rose did not have to go through with the STD test after she opened up to him about her previous relationships. The next bump in the road came after Ed, who was uncomfortable staying at her home because of the lack of modern conveniences like air conditioning and running water, convinced Rose to leave her 4-year-old son with her sister while they went on a vacation together in Palawan.

The morning after they arrived on the tropical island, Ed gifted Rose with sexy lingerie. He then told her that her breath does not smell “pretty,” then proceeded to gift her a toothbrush, toothpaste and mouthwash. Rose explained the reason for her bad breath was not because of poor dental hygiene, but because she had a stomach ulcer.

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Looking back, Ed seemed to regret making those comments to Rose. “I can’t believe I said that. Why did I say that?” he said.

Viewers were outraged after the mouthwash scene aired and 90 Day Fiancé alum Ricky Reyes even called Ed out for “disrespecting” Rose on national TV. The Filipina took to Instagram Live to slam Ed herself in a since-deleted video, which was captured by blogger John Yates.

“I want to say ‘Ed, how dare you?’ To make me embarrassed in front of [a] million people,” Rose said on April 23. “Please people don’t believe him. It’s fake. He [doesn’t] really care [about] me. He just [wants to be] famous that’s why he doing that. He did not even give me a penny. [It’s] all lies. He did not give me any gifts except bra and panty [sic] and the word that came out mouth is [a] lie. It’s not at all true. He did not care [about] me and especially [about] my son. So please. You always embarrass me and [I] be always quiet but for now, I always talk about you. You are always [a] liar.”

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