Ryan Lochte Says He's Estranged from His Mother: 'She Said Some Very, Very Hurtful Things'

"My job is to protect my family. And I will do anything, no matter what, to protect my family," the swimmer told Graham Bensinger

Ryan Lochte says his relationship with his mother is damaged and that he hasn't spoken to her in "years."

In a new interview for In Depth with Graham Bensinger, Lochte, 36, opened up about how his parents' 2011 divorce changed his family dynamic.

"At one point, we were all against someone, and then later on in life, it changed," he explained of his mother Ileana Lochte, and his father, Steven Lochte's split.

He elaborated, "When it happened, it was — we were all on my mom's side. But then later on in life, when I told her that she was going to be a grandma, and I'm having a kid she said some very, very hurtful things that kind of ended our relationship, me and her."

Lochte and his wife Kayla Rae Reid share two children: their daughter Liv Rae, 15 months, and son Caiden Zane, 3. The couple married in 2018.

The Olympic swimmer declined to reveal what specifically his mother said, but elaborated, "She just said some things to me and my wife, but I mean, I can get over it, but I just want an apology from her. And she said that she'll never apologize."

Ryan Lochte Ileana Lochte
Ryan Lochte and mother Ileana Lochte. Noel Vasquez/Getty

"She has nothing to say sorry for," he said during the interview. "And from there on, it's — I haven't spoken to her in years. "

Now, years removed, Lochte admitted, "I don't care." He explained, "I'm happy right now with my family. My job is to protect my family. And I will do anything, no matter what, to protect my family."

Lochte — who is currently training for the rescheduled Tokyo Summer Olympics next year — said his relationship with his father, on the other hand, is "closer" than ever. He also praised his stepmother, telling Bensinger, "How she treats me, my family, my dad. She's the best."

Ultimately, said Lochte of his parents' breakup and dad's remarriage, "This is something that I don't regret happened because they're happy and that's all I want."

Now, the athlete is focused on considering growing his own family, he recently told PEOPLE. "We talked about another child. We always go back and forth about it," he explained.

"This is where [wife Kayla's] like, 'If we have a third one, we can't have an odd number. So you have to have four,' " explained Lochte. "I'm like, 'All right, I guess so. You're the mom.' "

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