Ethan Miller/Getty Images; John Kopalov / Movie Magic
Lala Kent looks back on her relationship with Randall Emmett.
Kent and Emmett, who share 9-month-old daughter Ocean, separated this fall after their September 2018 engagement. As she prepares for her first Christmas as a single mom, Vanderpump rules The 31-year-old star opened up to people about the “red flags” she’s been ignoring with Emmett, 50.
“There’s such a laundry list,” she told People. “A man who doesn’t let you look at his phone, someone who’s never been home—all these things I just think of; so he wasn’t present at any moment, whether he was with me or his children. It was like he was there physically, but he wasn’t mentally there.” “.
“The phone was a big, big addiction,” Kent continues. “I always wonder what he could constantly be doing on that phone? And now I see everything. I should have opened my eyes and said, ‘This is not normal behaviour.'” “This is called a red flag, because it has gone a lot. This is a red flag.”
A representative for Emmett did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Amy Sussman/Getty Images Lala Kent and Randall Emmett
Related: Lala Kent calls Randall Emmett “the worst thing that ever happened to her”
Leaving her co-house with Emmett earlier this year, Kent says, “was like a weight that she carried off me.”
“The moment I left that house and found out I had left, I felt so free. I can’t even explain that feeling,” says the podcast host. “It made me cry because I was like, ‘Oh my God, it’s over, it’s over. “I lost myself a lot in that relationship. I met him at a very young age. It was a huge hiccup. He took away my independence somewhat.”
“The fact that during that relationship I was able to build a brand and actually gain independence in a relationship that I could have easily become more dependent on, did the opposite,” she adds. “I feel like I should preach to all the women, and get your own money for a rainy day. If you need to make a quick getaway, you can do it.”
Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Lala Kent
Related: Lala Kent wonders how she felt ‘safe’ with ex Randall Emmett: ‘He haunts me daily’
Today, the former couple follow a joint parenting schedule for Ocean but have “very little communication,” Kent says — and she’s happier than ever.
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“I feel very happy,” says the reality star. “Freedom is a really cool thing.”
“I don’t think people realize, you fall into a just lifestyle and you feel good and you don’t even realize things aren’t working until you decide or you have to switch things up and you’re like, ‘Holy–, this life is so amazing,'” she adds.