Entertainment TV Audrina Patridge Recalls Mentally 'Preparing' Herself to Become a Single Mother in New Memoir "I had to be able to say confidently: I will take care of the baby girl, no matter what, even if it means doing it alone," Patridge writes in an excerpt of her memoir, Choices: To the Hills and Back Again By Christina Dugan Ramirez Christina Dugan Ramirez Writer-Reporter, TV People Editorial Guidelines Published on July 22, 2022 09:00 AM Share Tweet Pin Email Audrina Patridge with daughter Kirra. Photo: Michael Simon/startraksphoto.com Audrina Patridge is used to putting it all out there, between starring on MTV's The Hills from 2006 to 2010 and then its reboot, The Hills: New Beginnings, from 2019 to 2021. In this week's issue of PEOPLE, the reality star opens up about the lessons she's learned along the way as she prepares to release her new memoir Choices: To the Hills and Back Again, out July 26. One of Patridge's most difficult moments in the public eye was her divorce from Corey Bohan. The duo split in 2018 after two rocky years, which included an incident she says her ex became physical with her. (Bohan, 40, denies the allegation.) "It was a gradual build up," Patridge, 37, says of the headline-fueling split and its aftermath. "It was a gradual escalation that was heartbreaking. A divorce is like a death. It's something you mourn. And it's really hard to go through. So going through it in the public is even harder. Everything was released publicly so I felt like I had to include that in my book because it was such a big part of my life." "Now, it's like, I love myself enough to walk away," she continues. "You have to love yourself enough to say enough is enough. Or I'm not putting up with this. You crossed the line and I'm not okay with it. It's all about communication and setting boundaries and not being pushed into peer pressure, or gaining that strength, courage, and security back that you're going to be okay." She adds, "I've learned a lot of that going through this. And I've learned that when you're in a bad relationship, you put up with a lot of things because you're trying to force it to work and trying to change yourself, to make the other person happy. And that's not good. You've got to notice all those signs and stop it before it gets too far." Simon and Schuster The Stars of The Hills: Where Are They Now? In an exclusive excerpt from her book, Patridge shares the eye-opening moments during her pregnancy in which she realized she may become a single mother to her and Bohan's now 6-year-old daughter Kirra. Being pregnant changed my perspective on everything. I felt like my senses were on high alert, and when you're the only one sober in a group of people partying, it really lets you see more clearly. Whenever Corey was in town very briefly during those months, we'd go out with friends, and I would obviously be the designated driver. I often wanted to go home early if I was tired or my feet hurt, but I didn't want to be a buzzkill, and Corey wasn't tuned in to what I needed. Seeing him get drunk, reckless, and meanwhile I was completely sober was eye-opening. Normally I'd have been drinking with him, and if he said rude things, I would fight back. But now that I was pregnant and sober, I would just stay silent because I didn't want to get into a fight with a drunk man. Which, it turns out, would make him even angrier. He didn't take it out on me as much, but he could be mean and aggressive toward his friends, yelling and calling them names. It really hit home for me to see it while I was sober. Corey wouldn't remember any of it the next day, which enabled him to move on like it wasn't a big deal. I was so sensitive to his moods. When it was good, we would talk about the baby and our little family, how excited we were, how precious our little girl would be. But I could never truly enjoy those times, because I'd started to realize that the other shoe would always drop. Audrina Patridge and Corey Bohan. Jason Kempin/Getty Audrina Patridge Says She's 'Grown So Much' Since The Hills: 'I Was So Naive' I prepared myself, mentally, to have and to raise this baby alone. I was still going to marry him—raising our little girl within a traditional family was that important to me—but I started to see that he wouldn't be there when I needed him. Financially, I had enough in savings and with the sale of my LA home to feel secure that I could take care of my daughter and support us. To reduce my stress levels, I was taking a break from television work that would take me into LA, so while living with my parents and house hunting, I threw all of my energy into nesting. I spent a lot of time in those last weeks and months of pregnancy preparing myself to become a mother, someone responsible for the safety and well-being of a child. I had to be able to say confidently: I will take care of the baby girl, no matter what, even if it means doing it alone. Looking back, it's clear that I wouldn't have been getting all of my ducks in a row to care for my daughter solo if I thought things were fine. I was worried about Corey, about our relationship, about being a mom, about finding a new home for us in Orange County. And then, of course, I was worried about that stress affecting the baby, which only drove my stress levels higher. That was my first lesson in motherhood: there's so much to worry about, even worry itself. I wanted with every fiber of my being for this to work, for us to be a family, but subconsciously, I was preparing for the worst. Audrina Patridge. Rodin Eckenroth/Getty I really threw myself into finding a new home in Orange County to bring my daughter home to; I researched different areas, driving around to scope things out. The house hunt became my focal point, because it allowed me to think about something other than my relationship. I ended up finding this beautiful house in Irvine, in a picture-perfect neighborhood with a lot of young families and parks nearby. I just felt in my bones that this was where we needed to be. It was brand-new construction, with a lot of great natural light. The inside was bright and beachy, with light wood floors. And the big backyard was perfect for running around with Kirra one day. This was the house for us. When I told Corey about the house, he wasn't engaged or decisive, and he made no move to participate in the purchase. So I bought it myself, with my grandpa as my mortgage cosigner. I remember feeling so proud that I'd done it, and that my grandpa was the one by my side. The house was still being built, and our occupancy date was early June, giving us just a few weeks to settle in before the baby arrived. Patridge's memoir Choices: To the Hills and Back Again is out July 26.