Khloé Kardashian first started dating Tristan Thompson in 2016, and it didn’t take long for their relationship to become dogged with cheating rumors.
In April 2018 — just two days before she gave birth to her first child, True, — Tristan was exposed for cheating on Khloé several times throughout her pregnancy.
While Khloé initially ended things with Tristan in response to his infidelity, they eventually got back together. Last year, BuzzFeed News revealed that the two had secretly got engaged in February 2021.
But this would also end in heartbreak for Khloé, with the world of showbiz being rocked in December 2021 when it was revealed that Tristan had fathered a baby with personal trainer Maralee Nichols behind Khloé’s back.
He impregnated Maralee just one month after his and Khloé’s engagement — and after leaving a lavish 30th birthday party that his fiancée had thrown for him to receive a “special birthday surprise” from Maralee in Texas.
News of Maralee’s pregnancy broke after legal documents that Tristan had filed leaked online. Khloé was understandably heartbroken to learn about the scandal “with the rest of the world,” and Tristan appeared to have every intention of hiding Maralee from Khloé despite being embroiled in a messy court case with the former at the time.
In legal documents, Maralee claimed that Tristan offered her $75,000 to have an abortion, and that he’d vowed to have “zero involvement” in their son’s life. Tristan denied these allegations.
But just when everybody thought that the whole situation couldn’t get any worse, Khloé announced in July that she and Tristan were expecting their second child together via surrogate.
Khloé shared more details in the Season 2 premiere of her family reality show The Kardashians, where she revealed that her and Tristan’s embryo was transferred to the surrogate just days before his paternity scandal was exposed.
Khloé was devastated as she confirmed that Tristan had found out about Maralee’s pregnancy on July 2 but still pressured her into the surrogacy. She went on to share her belief that Tristan wanted the surrogate to be pregnant with his and Khloé’s child before his secret son with Maralee was born.
“All I know is I was being encouraged to do it by a certain date,” she said. “In hindsight, he always knew when the other baby was being born — especially getting the paperwork that we saw, he found out July 2, so he did know.”
Khloé went on to describe Tristan’s paternity scandal as “a dark cloud around something that is supposed to be so joyous” as she admitted to burying her head in the sand as she tried to avoid the problem.
She also said that she was scared of making the news of her second child public because she knew that she would receive backlash for having another baby with Tristan considering his long history of infidelity.
Khloé was visibly emotional as she said: “I can’t hear about this for months about what an idiot I am, what a dumb bitch I am, all these things from everybody else.”
She later told her best friend Malika Haqq that Tristan was “excited” for their son’s arrival but she was trying to keep a distance and refusing to answer his questions.
Their son, Tatum, was born on July 28, and while Tristan was not present at the hospital when their surrogate gave birth, Khloé agreed for him to visit afterwards.
“I’ve been on the fence about having Tristan come to the hospital or not,” she shared. “But Tristan wants to be here so I just figured why not, let him come, I’ll never get this moment back.”
Since their son’s arrival, Khloé has faced constant speculation that she has once again taken Tristan back because of how regularly they are spotted together.
But in this week’s episode of The Kardashians, the star set the record straight as she detailed the super strict boundaries that she has in place to ensure that she never rekindles her romance with Tristan again.
After her mom, Kris Jenner, asked Khloé how things were going with her ex, Khloé said: “We always get along great. Him and I have a great friendship relationship, we get along fine. And for my kids I will put anything to the side.”
“What’s done is done, so why would I still be holding onto something for?” she went on. “I don’t need to ‘punish him’ because I’m not getting back with him.”
Kris then said that she thought it was “cute” when she recently visited Khloé’s house and saw that Tristan was giving True her breakfast.
“If I’m not here, like, when I’m not around, he’s here,” Khloé explained. “And I’d rather him be here than a nanny. I mean, there’s still boundaries. I’m definitely putting my foot down around a lot of things, like, no one's chilling if there’s no kids involved.”
“It’s always about the kids and that’s what it is,” she went on. “We’re not just hanging out by ourselves or watching TV, like, no.”
“I’m glad,” Kris said approvingly. “That makes me happy.”
Khloé gave more insight into the boundaries that she enforces with Tristan in a confessional, where she said: “These boundaries are so important to put into place with Tristan because we’ve done this song and dance a handful of times already.”
“I’ve gotten back with him after a cheating scandal, so I don’t know if Tristan is under the impression: ‘Oh, wow, OK, let’s just ride this out and eventually she’ll get back with me,’” Khloé added. “I get why he would think that so it’s my job to set boundaries, that my actions show otherwise.”
“I keep it very short and sweet and I make sure he knows it’s all about the kids because it’s so easy to fall back into: ‘Hey, let’s watch a game or this or that,’” Khloe shared. “I can’t let those old habits just easily come into my life. It’s just not what I want.”
During the same scene with Kris, Khloé opened up about feeling “guilty” for not yet having the same bond with Tatum that she had with True right after her birth.”
“I love him and I love kids but I still don’t have that complete bond but so many people say it takes time,” she explained. “I feel guilty sometimes, I’m like: ‘Why isn’t it the same?’ but I know it will be. I don’t treat him differently, I just question myself sometimes.”
Kris reassured Khloé that she is a great mom before reasoning that her trauma with Tristan throughout the surrogacy could be an underlying factor in her struggle to bond with her son.
“You’ve been through a lot,” she said. “Your emotions are spent on just dealing with trauma.”