For Better or for Worse
Teresa Giudice opens up about Joe's phone call.
From flipping a table to giving birth to going through bankruptcy to a million other things, I've done a lot and seen a lot from my family and friends on camera over the last few years. I thought nothing could surprise me anymore. And then I got the call.
A magazine called me two weeks ago to ask me about my reaction to the new episode they just received. I hadn't seen it, so I had no idea what they were talking about. Once I got a copy and watched it, I was sick. I felt like I'd been kicked in the stomach. It has not been a good couple of weeks.
Of course I begged Bravo not to air it, but when you sign up for a TV show, you sign up to show everything, warts and all. The good and the bad. Kind of like that other promise: for better or for worse. Welcome to the "worse."
Why did he say it? I have no idea. I do know we were in the wine capital of America drinking heavily... Alcohol + camera = not a good idea. But believe me, if he talked to me like that regularly, we would not be together. I don't know why the camera (and alcohol) brings out the worst in him... it just does. Imagine being filmed all the time during the most stressful parts of your life. Last year was not an easy year for either of us for a lot of reasons: finances, family, people we thought were our friends...
We were on an 8-day trip in close quarters with people Joe didn't really want to be with. Eight days of nonstop filming is a long, long time. He did have problems with his work back home, and we left our kids behind in a hurricane. I guess it made for the perfect storm in more ways than one. But no matter what the circumstances were, it's not OK that he talked to me like that. It's not OK for our relationship, it's not OK as an example for our daughters, it's not how I want to be spoken to or will be spoken to by anyone.
Joe does feel terrible, and he's apologized to me and all of our friends. We all have a bad side, but not all of us are lucky enough to have it broadcast around the world. Being on TV is like being in front of the worst mirror ever sometimes. Hopefully you learn from it and try to be a better person.And we're both trying. I don't think anyone on TV doesn't watch themselves and cringe at what they thought would be a funny joke at the time that just comes out sounding terrible or awkward. I know I do. But you also can't over analyze it or you'll go crazy or start faking your way through everything. I would rather be imperfect than fake. Or crazy for that matter. But, I'm not going to lie, it does hurt.
My husband disrespecting me on camera happened a year ago, but I just found out about it, and I'm trying to process it. I seem to always be the last to find out things, huh? People's pasts keep coming out and they admit their dirty deeds to me, like my own family contacting Danielle to try and "take me down," but I only find out about it months or years later. They say they're sorry, they're not that person now, and what can I do? I forgive them. I forgave my brother and Melissa, and I can forgive Joe. But I'm not stupid. It does make me wary, it does make it hard to trust the people I love.
But that's how it is in grown-up life. It's not a fairy tale. Everyone I know has their own share of heartbreak. And to be honest, guys in Jersey aren't the most refined in the world. I look around me and I see other guys treating their women the same as Joe treated me and worse. I don't like it; I don't think any woman does. It's weird that we put up with it when we're so strong and smart in so many other ways... But I'm sure it's the same with guys in a lot of places.
They're different animals. They are animals. They think it's funny to show everyone their buttholes. Women aren't like this. We have our own kind of ugly that men don't understand. But we have to work it out and live together, don't we? I don't really want a guy that acts like a woman. I'd rather not have Joe talk to me like a perfect gentlemen and go to his mistress' apartment every night either.So I guess you have to decide what you can take and what will break you. I'm pretty strong and I have to be: I'm the mom of four little girls. The truth is Joe and I are happy together now. He's a great dad and a great husband and we still really like each other. He's not perfect, I'm not perfect, but you put up with each other's faults for the good of the whole. Should I break up my family and leave him because he called me an ugly name a year ago? My pride wants to of course, but I don't think that's the right or responsible thing to do.
People don't stay married for decades without bumps in the road. So this is a pretty big bump, but I'm hanging on. Thank you all for hanging on with me!
What else was in the episode that I need to talk about? Caroline's birthday dinner was fabulous. Of course I didn't mean to "snub" Kathy in my toast! For goodness sake! I thanked our hosts, the birthday girl, and mentioned how glad I was that I was working things out with my brother. I have wonderful things I could have said about everyone at the table -- how much I love Vito's bear tattoo, how Lauren just warms my heart every time I see her happy little face -- but that would be kind of ridiculous and long. I had patched things up with Kathy already at our lunch, but this trip was the start of fixing things with my brother and Melissa. If anything, Kathy should be happy for me and Joey. If Rosie was sitting at the table and they toasted each other after a rough patch, I'd be happy for her and not try and make it all about me... I'm sorry, but it just didn't make sense to toast Kathy or Richie, because then I would have had to also toast Albie and Chris and Greg and Lauren and Vito and the people who owned the winery and the camera guys and my agent...
I actually don't even have an agent. Well I do have a literary agent for my books, but that's it. No PR person either. Bravo TV is my PR.
I have lots of Fabellini and book signing events coming up, so check out my website for information: www.teresagiudice.com. I hope you all have a wonderful week. Keep sending me positive messages -- I need them!