Vanderpump Rules star James Kennedy got real about his journey with sobriety. The DJ struggled with his alcohol addiction for years and many of those struggles played out over his years on the show.
Longtime Vanderpump Rules viewers have seen James unravel on more than one occasion, often embarrassing his now-fiancee, Raquel Leviss.
After an intense conversation that resulted in Raquel’s ultimatum that James get sober or their relationship would come to an end, James decided to put in the work and get on the wagon — sort of.
James talks being California sober, reacts to Vanderpump Rules co-star comments
During last night’s appearance on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen, James and Raquel sat down and answered some of the tough-hitting questions, one of which included James’ sobriety.
A virtual audience member for the show asked James what his reaction was to Lala’s statements that she find the term California sober to be “offensive.”
The term is generally used to describe someone who stops using a substance like alcohol and harder drugs but continues to smoke or use marijuana. Demi Lovato has also used the term to describe their sobriety and admits that they use alcohol and marijuana “in moderation.”
For Lala though, who has been sober for nearly three years, she claimed in a previous interview that the premise of California sober took away from the hard work of those who avoid using mind-altering substances at all.
Upon learning Lala’s viewpoint, James expressed his surprise but stands by his decisions to get clean in his own way.
“Did she really say that?” James asked in disbelief. “I’m not sure. But if she did, you know, okay, well she can’t really mean it. I don’t know. I think she says some things sometimes…I know she respects where I’m at.”
James continued noting that he knows Lala is “completely sober, sober” which is a different approach to sobriety.
James admits he won’t give up marijuana any time soon
Andy carried the conversation forward, pointing out that some view California sober as “substituting one addiction for another,” and James indicated that he understood the perception.
“I will be honest. You know, the weed has definitely, it helped me quit the alcohol for good,” he admitted. “I will quit weed also when the time comes. Do you know what I mean? But it’s like, I just don’t feel like I should quit right now.”
In fact, James wonders why he would give it up when “it doesn’t harm” him or affect his “life in a negative way?”
“So why quit?” he asked.
However, Raquel shared her own thoughts and weighed in on James’ sobriety.
“I don’t mind if he smokes weed because his issue doesn’t lie with weed. It lies with alcohol.”
Although not everyone may agree with James’ decisions, Andy pointed out that he’s seen positives from the new lifestyle as he recalled a previous visit James and Lala had made to WWHL when they swore and struggled to make it through the interview due to their substance abuse.
“It’s wild and it’s a blessing. I thank God every day for my sobriety. Honestly like, cutting out alcohol was the best decision I’ve ever made. Thanks to this one right here [Raquel],” James gushed.
Vanderpump Rules airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on Bravo.