Katie Maloney is dishing on all things Tom Schwartz. Ahead of the season 10 premiere of Vanderpump Rules, ET’s Brice Sander spoke with Maloney, who previewed the season, including her ex-husband’s kiss with Raquel Leviss.
“It just made me realize that this person, under no circumstances, will never respect me and will just continue to humiliate me,” Maloney told ET of Schwartz’s kiss, which went against the one thing she asked of him when they called off their more than decade-long romance last year.
“That was part of us moving forward in this friendship and kind of trying to maintain a friendship and boundaries and comfortability,” she said of her request that they not hook up within their mutual friend group. “I thought that would help us, because it’s toxic. I didn’t want us to be a Vanderpump Rules statistic where it becomes very incestuous.”
“It felt like just such a slap in the face. Truly. I wasn’t trying to control the man,” she added. “He’s free to do what he wanted, but it was the fact that we really had had multiple conversations and were pretty much on the same page about it all, and I couldn’t wrap my head around it.”
As for how she felt about Leviss after the fact, Maloney said, “My opinion of her couldn’t be lower.” Maloney additionally teased that the situation felt “a little bit” like a calculated move on Leviss’ part “because of the lead up to it all.”
That drama is something that people will get to see during season 10, as Maloney promised that the Bravo series will follow her decision to divorce Schwartz and “the aftermath of it all.”
Maloney told ET that it all started in early 2022, when she first began questioning her and Schwartz’s relationship.
“It had been going on for maybe a couple months and I just was in a lot of denial because… nobody wants to get divorced,” she explained. “… I sat with it for a long time and… I had to give myself deadlines… just because it’s not fun. It’s heartbreaking. It hurts. It’s just the most painful thing.”
Eventually, Maloney started telling Schwartz that she “was feeling a certain way.” Afterward, the then-couple went to therapy, but it didn’t improve the situation.
“We had gone to a therapy session and sort of in that therapy session a lot of things became very clear that he just isn’t willing [to do],” Maloney said. “I think I had been very patient and tolerant of a lot of things and being just, once again, very open about what I needed from him, and him just being very much like, ‘No.'”
It was around Valentine’s Day 2022 that Maloney realized “divorce is probably gonna be the option.”
“I just think he just didn’t quite understand just how to meet certain needs and wasn’t really willing to do the work,” she said. “… It definitely was a snowball over time… [There] might have always been red flags, but when you’re younger they maybe aren’t as big of issues and you think [that] maybe, as somebody grows up, they’re gonna grow out of those things, they’re gonna mature, but that didn’t really happen, unfortunately.”
Additionally, Maloney felt as if Schwartz was “lacking the ability to prioritize things in his life.”
“I felt like I was just kind of an option and [he was] thinking I was never gonna go anywhere, so he didn’t have to make me a priority ever,” she said. “It’s just, like, that sucks. When you realize that that is something that’s probably never gonna change, it’s a very hurtful thing… The future that you were planning towards and looking forward to is just not gonna happen anymore, so it’s just so much. It’s heavy.”
Ultimately, Maloney “just got to this place when I started working on myself and building a confidence within myself.”
“I got to a point where I was able to kind of look at my relationship and I felt like I was just in a different place in my own self and felt safer in my own body and life,” she said. “I was just like, ‘What am I doing? This is not what I want and what I deserve.'”
What followed is “a lot of ebb and flow” in Maloney and Schwartz’s relationship.
“Obviously, it’s not linear when you go through a big life change and life event like that,” she said. “… The healing and grieving, that process, it’s not linear. I think Tom and I were just trying to figure out our new dynamic… We still have this group of friends [that] is still both of our group of friends. We’re trying to figure out how to navigate that space and create boundaries that would make us feel comfortable. That didn’t quite work out for us both, but trying to navigate the space is really difficult.”
Maloney acknowledged that her and Schwartz’s post-divorce decisions aren’t for everyone, but told ET why it was important for them to remain cordial.
“We do split custody with the dogs. They go back and forth one week with me and then one week with him,” she said. “We want to be able to be friendly. Maybe we can’t be as close or spend as much time with each other as we were initially, but I think we had to just kind of get to that point slowly. When you’re together with somebody for over a decade and you’re used to spending so much time together… it feels very abrupt just to be cold turkey… especially when you still have love, and you don’t necessarily hate the person.”
Maloney added, “I think right now people have a lot of preconceived notions about how and why things went down, and I think you’re gonna be surprised, maybe.”
Today, Maloney told ET that she and Schwartz are “good.”
“We’re not talking every single day. We don’t see each other all the time,” she said. “We, for the first time, kind of caught up on my birthday. We had lunch. And that was nice. It was lovely. I was happy to just kind of check in with him.”
With her relationship with Schwartz behind her, Maloney will jump into the dating scene during season 10.
“For a lot of my friends and people within this group, they’ve only ever known me to be with Tom. The last time I was single I was 24 and now, well, it’s 36. [There’s a] pretty big time gap there,” she said. “Not only was the landscape totally different, but now just my life is totally different. My approach to everything was just kind of keeping things light and fun… I was keeping things very separate from everyone and everything kind of by design. I didn’t want to throw anything in Tom’s face. I didn’t want to bring it to his door.”
While Maloney confirmed that she’s currently single, she does know what she’s looking for in her next relationship.
“Somebody who is a little more serious about life. Not too serious, obviously, but… they’re emotionally mature, they’re evolved,” she said. “… I just like somebody who has a good sense of humor, we can laugh and play together and just support each other in our endeavors… A true partnership. Someone who is going to be… emotionally supportive and not treat me like I’m an option.”
As for if wedding bells could ring again, Maloney said she’s “not opposed” to the idea.
“If I met somebody and they were like, ‘That’s really what I want,’ I’d be like, ‘Sure,'” she said. “But it would the whole wedding thing that’s hard to picture myself doing [again]… That I don’t think I would do again.”
All in all, Maloney said that “life has been really good” as of late.
“[Divorce] just turns your world upside down. I was very scared to make this decision for multiple reasons, but I wanted the opportunity to be happy and have the kind of life and future that I deserve,” she said. “To make that kind of choice and choose myself, and then see where I’m at now and feel and recognize the growth of myself [has] really been positive. I definitely do feel happy… I’m excited. I feel like there’s just so much opportunity.”
That happiness is something Maloney is determined not to jeopardize as she watches the season play out on TV.
“I always watch ’cause we film so much that you want to know what’s actually in there,” she said, “but I just think the healthy approach is to say, ‘OK, it’s already happened. It’s behind you. You dealt with it. You’ve moved on from it, so it doesn’t make sense to act like it’s brand new.'”
Overall, Maloney is excited for viewers to see “a totally different side” of her during season 10.
“You’ve never seen me date, you’ve never seen me without Tom… I’m definitely looking forward to that,” she told ET, before sharing how the season “feels very much like old Vanderpump Rules.”
“It feels like kind of that same sort of fun, sort of a little bit of scandal, a little bit of fun, a little bit of sexiness to it,” she said. “It’s not just people in their houses hanging pictures on the wall.”
Vanderpump Rules returns to Bravo on Feb. 8.
Source: ET Online