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The Daily Dish The Real Housewives of New Jersey

Melissa Gorga Says Her Split From Teresa Giudice Is Like a “Weight Lifted”

The Real Housewives of New Jersey cast member details how her relationship with Teresa has evolved ahead of Season 14.

By Casey Suglia

Just days before the Season 14 premiere of The Real Housewives of New Jersey on Sunday, May 5, Melissa Gorga opened up about the current status of her relationship with sister-in-law, Teresa Giudice.

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Melissa and Teresa have had their differences since the Envy boutique owner made her debut as a cast member on RHONJ in Season 3. Now, 11 seasons later, they are still at odds. But, Melissa is talking about why things have finally changed for them. Rest assured, Season 14 probably won't be the same old back and forth family drama now that both women are focusing on themselves after their falling out.

Melissa Gorga on How Season 14 is "Refreshing"

The mom of three told E! News that this new season has brought some much welcomed changes for her following the rift with Teresa.

"It's such a different season and it's refreshing, especially for me," she explained. "I just feel there's like a weight lifted off my shoulders not to have that family drama be the center of it all."

Melissa Gorga and Joe Gorga posing together in front of a sunset.

Melissa emphasized that she's excited to focus on her own family with husband, Joe Gorga (who is Teresa's estranged brother). "Joe and I are a very known couple on the show, and we're a family that can stand on our own without going to the deep, dark place," she explained. "So that's kind of what I value for me and my family on the show."

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Melissa Gorga and Teresa Giudice's Season 14 Dynamic

Season 14 viewers will end up seeing limited contact between the sister-in-laws as they focus on their own lives. However, Melissa revealed to E! News that she has "never refused not to speak to" Teresa. "I just thought it's a dead end," she explained. "We're not getting anywhere."

In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, Melissa said that they didn't interact, and, "unfortunately," she doesn't see it changing. "I finally accepted that," she said.

Split of Melissa Gorga and Teresa Giudice

"I fought for so many years for other people," she added. "I, honestly — more than even myself — I fought for the family and for my husband and my kids, and I realized that it's not worth fighting for, and I'm actually not doing them any favors."

Melissa Gorga and Teresa Giudice’s History

Earlier this year, in an interview with ET, Melissa said of Teresa, "We don't even, like, look at each other."

"It is the new normal," she elaborated at the time."I think it just is what it is. I always say it's unfortunate. I'll never be, like, happy about that. But we're all living, and we're happy, and sometimes things just need to take its course. Right now that's definitely how it is."

At BravoCon 2023 in November in Las Vega, Melissa also discussed her shifting dynamics with Teresa. “It’s very different from last season," she admitted. "I think it’s different because there’s not a lot of communication. So, it's different and I think better, honestly." 

“We’re at a place of peace. I think everyone needs a minute, everyone needs a break and there’s just a period on it right now," Melissa said during the BravoCon “In a Jersey State of Mind: Part 1” panel.

What to Expect From RHONJ Season 14

The taglines for this season, as seen in the video above, hint at cast member Dolores Catania "playing Switzerland" between Teresa, who "keeps on growing," and Melissa, who plans to "burn bridges." And, according to a press release, this season "will prove that friendships can change at a flip of a switch."

"As dynamics change within the circle of friends, the ladies of the Garden State will rely on their core family units for support and understanding," the press release reads.  

This season will also see Melissa's world change as she prepares to send her daughter, Antonia, off to college, helps out her aging mother, and contemplates expanding her business. Teresa, on the other hand, will continue to navigate "her new family life" with husband, Luis "Louie" Ruelas, while she navigates sending her second oldest daughter, Milania, off to college.

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