Although Katie Maloney and Tom Schwartz, 39, called it quits after 12 years together, the 35-year-old Vanderpump Rules star is still hopeful about finding love. A source close to the Bravolebrity spoke EXCLUSIVELY with HollywoodLife and explained why Katie is “looking forward to what’s next.”
“Katie is handling the separation better than expected,” an insider revealed. “She knows she’s young enough to completely start over and find someone who makes her happy. A piece of her will always love Tom, but they really had grown apart over the years.”
The reality star is thankful she has close, supportive friends including fellow VPR cast members, Stassi Schroeder and Lala Kent. “Katie is so thankful she has an amazing group of girlfriends around her and she’s been leaning heavily on Stassi and Lala. Katie loves that she has another single friend now in Lala so they can support each other and know what the other is going through,” the pal continued.
The reality stars took to Instagram on March 15 and separately announced that they were breaking up after 12 years together. “Everybody knows that Katie and Tom have had their ups and downs over the years,” the source added. “But everybody in their circle of friends always assumed they would work things out.”
“They’ve broken up in the past, but they’ve always managed to find their way back together,” the friend said. “And as much as their friends would love to see them get back together, it really does feel final this time. Not only to their friends, but to Katie and Tom, as well. They’ve grown a lot as individuals while in their relationship and they’ve really discussed this thoroughly before making the decision to split.”
Rumors of the couple’s breakup surfaced earlier in the week when Katie was pictured without her wedding ring in an Instagram post. And last month, Katie reposted a cryptic quote from Kim Kardashian‘s Vogue cover story. The post read: “In the last two years, I decided I’m going to make myself happy. And that feels really good. And even if that created changes and caused my divorce, I think it’s important to be honest with yourself about what really makes you happy. I’ve chosen myself. I think it’s okay to choose you.”