"This is unchartered territory for me. It’s been difficult. Fortunately, it was amicable. It’s hard," the 'Real Housewives of Beverly Hills' star said of her marital issues
In a sneak peek at an upcoming episode of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, which aired during Richards' appearance on Live with Kelly and Mark on Friday, the 54-year-old reality star confided in her friend and costar Dorit Kemsley about needing time for herself.
During a car ride together, Kemsley, 47, asked, “I mean, have you had any thoughts recently? Like do you think you would not end up with Mo?”
“What makes you think this?” Richard responded.
“What makes me think this? Well, like even just from Instagram, you know, I usually see you and Mo together, and it just seemed like you were spending a lot of time away from each other,” Kemsley explained as Richards' recent Instagram photos with friends were shown.
“I feel like I needed a little freedom — freedom and some space,” the Halloween Ends star replied.
Richards then told co-hosts Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos that it was her first time seeing the RHOBH preview and she was “not thrilled with the questions” from Kemsley. She added, “I wasn’t ready to address that stuff.”
She noted that “it would’ve been better if she had asked me that off camera.”
Richards admitted on “that particular day, I was really not happy,” adding, “I feel like you could definitely see that.”
Richards and Umansky, 53, have been married since January 1996. The pair, who first met at a nightclub in 1994, share daughters Alexia, 27, Sophia, 23 and Portia, 15, as well as Farrah Brittany (née Aldjufrie), 34, from Kyle's first marriage to ex Guraish Aldjufrie.
In July, PEOPLE exclusively broke the news that Richards and the Buying Beverly Hills star were separated after 27 years of marriage. At the time, the estranged couple denied rumors they were getting divorced, but admitted to having a “rough year” in a joint statement posted to Instagram.
In her interview with Ripa and Consuelos, the reality star gave an update about how she is doing amid her separation.
“It’s been rough,” she shared. “This is unchartered territory for me. It’s been difficult. Fortunately, it was amicable. It’s hard. My main concern is our daughters, who’ve been amazing, my four best friends. It is hard.”
She said that navigating the public separation is difficult because fans “feel like they want to know all the answers” about what went wrong in the couple’s marriage. She added: “They also want to create their own story because we haven’t explained everything, which is impossible to do.”
In the aftermath of the separation, Richards shared that she has received messages from fans which read, “All our hopes and dreams are crushed” and “True love doesn’t exist.”
Ripa came to her defense with a message directed at fans, saying, “Let me just say this on your behalf: Grow up. It’s not about you.”
Earlier this month, Umansky opened up to PEOPLE about navigating difficult times in the couple’s long marriage. “We’ve been married for 27 years,” the Dancing with the Stars contestant said. “We’re having a bit of a rough patch.”
He added that “sometimes life throws you different things” and “you’ve gotta work through it.” His marriage to Richards — the first 26 years of which were “amazing” — is no different.
“She and I currently are separated, but we are not throwing in the towel,” he shared. “We’re not just saying that to say that. We actually are not yet throwing in the towel.”
As for what he wants fans and the public to know about the situation, Umansky said, “It’s very difficult to be in the public eye and have so much inquisition when you’re going through something tough.”
He continued, “My wife is just being looked at so intensely and it’s really not fair. She’s just a person. She’s an amazing human, she’s my best friend and she does not deserve to be so judged of everything she does.”
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The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Bravo.
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