Raquel Leviss, 27, and James Kennedy, 29, were a Vanderpump Rules staple couple for more than five years until they announced their split via Instagram on Dec. 5, 2021. Although Raquel somewhat explained the reasoning in the post by sharing the pair had “two different goals” and weren’t “in love anymore,” she’s now revealing more intimate details as to why she and James ultimately called it quits.
“There wasn’t one thing, it was like a cumulation of things,” Raquel explained on VPR co-star Scheana Shay‘s Scheananigans podcast this past week. “At Thanksgiving … James has always felt like my parents haven’t embraced him into the family the way he wanted to be accepted. My dad said some rude comment to him about him not wearing the hiking shoes he bought him when James asked for my dad’s blessing. He couldn’t find them, he was looking all over,” Raquel explained. “James was taken aback. He took it very personally. He took it as a knock to his ego and reacted in a way my sister says was not acceptable. And I agree, it wasn’t. Just like very angry and defensive and it go to the point where I was like, ‘Okay, we need to get out of here, go back to our hotel room and sort it all out.'”
The reality star went on to share that she realized she had been “making excuses for him” and that “part of [her] soul” was being taken from her. “It was getting to the point where my family and him were not meshing well and the future of Thanksgiving and Christmases and holidays was looking like it’s either going to be either James or my family,” she added. “Especially like if we had a baby, I feel like James would make my parents out as like the not good grandparents and kind of put that in their heads. Just foreseeing this future and what it was all coming down to and I was like, ‘I don’t want that.'”
After the 27-year-old came to understand her relationship with the DJ was one she no longer wanted to pursue, she hesitated to share her feelings with her fiancé out of fear for his reaction. “Because James does have a history of acting out and being angry, my mom and I were both concerned that he wasn’t going to have a good reaction when I told him, so I wasn’t planning on saying anything until he went out of town. He doesn’t even know this,” she continued, adding that she even went on a trip to Disneyland with VPR co-stars Ariana Madix and Tom Sandoval, where Raquel felt like she was “[putting] on an act … just to make sure that I was safe.”
The SURver added that James pleaded for another change, but Raquel had finally reached her breaking point — and James finally got it. “He was like, ‘Okay, I see it in your eyes. It’s over,'” she stated noting her surprise at how calm he had been acting the whole conversation. “He respected my decision. He was like, ‘If your heart isn’t in it anymore then I understand, we need to go our separate ways.'”
As for where they currently stand, Raquel shared that they still like each others’ posts on Instagram and speak “occasionally.” She also shared she was open to James seeing her dog, Graham Cracker, for playdates.