Mai, 39, spoke frankly to her fellow The Real co-hosts on Thursday saying her choice to not have children “was definitely one of the big main factors” in their decision to file for divorce.
“When we were dating I was always very vocal — because I’ll never lead a man on when I know I don’t want to have children,” Mai said. “So, I was always honest about that. I think we were both so young — it was like 14 years ago — I think he also thought, ‘You know what, we’re so in love I don’t want that either.’ He could have been happy not having children with me.”
Despite this, Mai said she couldn’t rest easy knowing he wanted something she couldn’t give him.
“When you physically see how a man is with a child, and if the man really desires to be a father, and you know that you are that block between that happening, you just don’t feel right about yourself every single day,” she revealed.
The two announced they were separating in October after 10 years of marriage.
While they are no longer together, Mai said she wishes Harteis nothing but the best.
“In my list of prayers I wish happiness for him every single day, and I pray because he’s getting at the age where I’m like, ‘Now, at some time!'” she said, referring to him having children. “And I just pray for love and I pray for that happening because he’d be an amazing dad, dude.”
Mai has always been open about the highs and lows of their relationship on the daytime talk show, telling costars Loni Love, Adrienne Houghton and Tamera Mowry-Housley in 2014 that the couple disagreed about expanding their family.
“You know how much I love Freddy, my husband. He’s my life. And before we got married, I was very clear about the fact that I probably would not have kids, just because I’ve never felt that. And now, getting older, he definitely seems like he wants kids, and he actually came out and said that he wants children,” an emotional Mai said at the time, tearing up on-air.
“I guess it’s just really hard because I can’t just have a child for another person, and you don’t have a child to save your marriage, but we are in love, and we are enjoying life, and he’s my Freddy, and I’m his Jeannie, and we don’t have any other problems except that, which, you never know what could happen in the future,” she added. “So right now we are clinging to each other, and we’re waiting for God to kind of tell us what that means, and it’s kind of weird to go to sleep every single night holding on to that person you love so much, not knowing where it’s gonna go.”