“There’s like a laundry list,” Lala told PEOPLE on December 24. “A dude not letting you look at his phone, someone who is never really home — all of these things that I just think about; he so was not present in any moment, whether it was with me or his children. It was like he was physically there, but he was not mentally there.”
“The phone was a major, major addiction,” she continued. “I always wonder what could he constantly be doing on that phone? And now I see it all. I should have opened my eyes and said, ‘This is not normal behavior.’ This is called a red flag. Him being gone so much, this is a red flag.”
While Lala chose to turn a blind eye to what Randall was doing for a while as she dedicated her life to the family they built, their relationship ultimately imploded in October after the film producer was allegedly caught at a Nashville hotel with two other women.
In the months that followed, text messages believed to have been sent between Randall and several other ladies were leaked. And, after over five years living with Randall in Bel Air, Lala moved into her own place.
Now, weeks later, Lala says moving out “was like a weight lifted off of me.”
“The moment I left that house, and he discovered that I had left, I felt so free. I can’t even explain the feeling,” she shared. “It brought me to tears because I was like, ‘Oh my God, it’s over, it’s done.’ I had lost myself a lot in that relationship. I met him at a very young age. It was a huge whirlwind. My independence was somewhat taken.”
“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 even more dependent on him, I did the opposite,” she went on. “I feel like I have to preach to all women, get your own funds for a rainy day. If you need to make a quick exit, that you’re able to do that.”
As for where she and Randall stand today, as they co-parent their daughter, nine-month-old Ocean, Lala said they are following a co-parenting schedule and have “very little communication.” And, despite the heartache she’s suffered, Lala is “very happy.”
“Freedom is a really amazing thing. I don’t think people realize, you fall into a pattern of just life and you get comfortable and you don’t even realize that things aren’t working until you decide or you’re forced to switch things up and you’re like, ‘Holy sh-t, this life is just absolutely amazing,'” she stated.
Vanderpump Rules season nine airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on Bravo.