Jeff Lewis Vows to 'Never Use' Daughter Monroe, 2, 'as a Weapon' Amid Separation From Gage Edward
The pair were together for ten years before Lewis announced that Edward moved out of the home they share with their daughter
“Whatever happens, if there’s bumps in the road — and there could be, and this could get a little contentious — I just want to vow that I will never use our baby as a weapon,” the Flipping Out star said during Tuesday’s episode of his SiriusXM radio show Jeff Lewis Live.
“He can see the baby whenever he wants to see the baby,” Lewis continued. “And I don’t care what any judge says. He needs to know that. He has 24-hour access. He’s just got to text me, ‘Hey, I’m on the way over.’”
Edward, 33, and Lewis, 48, welcomed Monroe in October 2016. (They are now involved in a lawsuit with the surrogate who carried her, who claims producers filmed her delivery for their Bravo show without her knowledge.)
Last week, following his announcement that Edward had moved out of their home and into a hotel, Lewis stated on the show, “I’m now a single dad ’cause the baby is with me.”
During that same episode, when asked by a caller how the estranged couple would handle custody of Monroe, Lewis said “I don’t even want to go there.”
Edward told PEOPLE he had no comment on the situation.
Lewis revealed on last Thursday’s episode that he and his partner of ten years had spent the better part of a year sleeping in separate bedrooms and said their relationship had become more of a “friends with benefits” arrangement.
“This has been a long time coming,” Lewis explained. “I think the reason we hadn’t ripped the Band-Aid off and separated is because a) we had the baby and neither one of us want to leave the baby and then b) financially, it wasn’t the best time because I have four properties right now — three of which are in construction and one of which is sellable.”
“Monroe’s happiness is Jeff and Gage’s top priority,” the insider said. “She’s their world.”
“They’ve always kept any of the trouble that was going on between them away from her, making it a point not to argue in front of her or around her,” the source added. “She’s totally unaware of any tension. They’re great parents.”
Another source told PEOPLE at the time that Lewis and Edward are still figuring out their next steps with Monroe.
“Jeff and Gage aren’t talking about long term custody plans just yet,” the source said. “This is just a temporary break — they’re still trying to work on their relationship, and Gage will still come and see Monroe.”
“Everyone in their lives are hoping they come back together,” added the insider. “They’ve been together for a long time and there’s a lot of history there. Unfortunately, they’ve just fallen into a pattern. Hopefully this time apart will help them both realize why they were together for so long.”
During Tuesday’s episode of Jeff Lewis Live, the host said that Edward had rented his own apartment, and, he claims, he found out the Edward went on a date less than a week after moving out.
“We’ve been getting along pretty well until I found out that he went out on a date on Saturday night,” Lewis said, adding that he believed Edward and his companion met at the gym some time ago.
“I will not say his name, but just for today, we’re going to call him ‘homewrecker,'” Lewis said of the anonymous man. “Homewrecker, I think, has been in [Edward’s] ear for quite some long time. I think Homewrecker has exploited quite a vulnerable situation. I think this person positioned himself as a gym buddy friend and I think this person has set his sights on him for quite some time.”
Although Lewis said he is “in pain” after learning that Edward was potentially seeing someone else, he is willing to take the majority of responsibility for the problems in their relationship, which come on the heels of a tumultuous year for the couple.
Lewis’s grandmother passed away and his personal and professional relationship with his friend of nearly 20 years and Flipping Out costar, Jenni Pulos, ended. The latter, Lewis has suggested may lead to the end of their Bravo series after 11 seasons.
The couple’s relationship news also comes nearly 8 months after their surrogate, who carried Monroe, filed a lawsuit against them. Alexandra Trent is suing the couple as well as Bravo and the show’s production company, Authentic Entertainment, claiming that the show filmed her giving birth without permission during her delivery and that Edward and Lewis made “disgusting” remarks about her.
She is seeking damages for unlawful recording, invasion of privacy and fraud. Lewis has strongly refuted these claims, but the legal action is ongoing and will likely go to trial.
“I am 90 percent responsible for why we are here,” he said. “I emotionally abandoned him last year. I was a completely prick. I turned on him. I pushed him away. It was my worst year. I experienced great loss. I lost my best friend of many years, Jenni, my grandmother, our surrogate, who I cared for. It was great loss and I did not handle it well. I self-destructed, I did. I didn’t even recognize myself. By the time I tried to correct the situation, which wasn’t until Jan. 1 of this year, it was too late.”
“I take responsibility,” he continued. “Believe it or not, I changed a lot in the last 30 days. There’s things that I’ve done and said that I would never do again to anyone, any person . . . I was circling the drain, I really was . . . It’s extremely f—ing painful, let me tell you.”
Jeff Lewis Live airs Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays (11 a.m. ET) on SiriusXM’s Radio Andy (Ch. 102.)