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Carole: It's Like Trying to Reason With a Toddler
Carole discusses her feelings going into the reunion and why she had a hard time communicating with Luann.
Bravotv.com: What were your feelings going into the reunion? Was there anyone you were nervous to see?
Carole Radziwill: Einstein once defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. This is my third reunion and each year I think— this time will be different. This time it will be an interesting debate where we all make our points and counterpoints. Where Andy Cohen will ask me a question, and I will answer it without being interrupted mid-thought. Where we debate each other and even if we differ on the outcome there is some sort of clarity, resolution, and a sense of moving forward. Each year, I honestly say to myself…it will be different this time. Fine, I’m no Einstein. Why is it that I always seem to be on the couch opposite the wall of nonsensical sound? There is mumbling and deflecting and unnecessary screaming. There are non-sequiturs and lots of obfuscation and projection. A cacophony of deafening clamor. Strangely though, I’m never nervous at the reunions. I realized, after the first year, that whatever we might say to defend our actions on camera the audience sees through the BS to the truth of the matter. It is a very passionate, intelligent, and insightful viewing audience. And that is somehow always reassuring to me.
Bravotv.com: Do you think Sonja ever got why you were offended by her “I partied with John John” comments?
CR: I believe that Sonja is a good person who honestly doesn’t mean to offend anyone. But sometimes she can’t see the forest through the trees. Yes, she may have known John, yes she may have even attended a party he was at. My point was that in the four years I’ve known Sonja not once, on or off camera, have we ever had a thoughtful or sensitive conversation about anyone in my late husband's family, including John. Now that is completely fine with me. My late husband's family is not something I sit around and discuss at cocktail parties. Watching that episode was the first time I’d heard about their apparent friendship and hearing her use John’s name in a way that was simply more name-droppy, self aggrandizement—that was nothing more than a continuation of her smoky eye, updo, Gstaad loop—was not pleasant. Even forgetting that he was someone I was once related to, he is no longer here with us. Isn’t there an expectation that people who are not around to defend themselves are not fodder for drunken cocktail party gossip? Am I crazy, or is it simply insensitive? I hoped she would have recognized that and said, “I understand, and I’m sorry I said that.” Sadly, I’m not sure that happened here.
Bravotv.com: What upset you most about the confrontation with Luann at the reunion?
CR: Nothing really upset me, because Luann threw away any chance at a real friendship long ago. That said…it is difficult to have an intelligent conversation with her, because she has no ability to self-reflect, and much of what I said seemed to go over her head. Although, yikes! I did not mince my words! She appears to me to be a hypocrite. A person who claims to have beliefs about what is right and what is wrong but behaves in a way that contradicts those beliefs. In case anyone still doesn’t get that, let me say it this way—she judges other people badly for the very things that she does; whether it's dating a younger man or dating her friend's ex or reprimanding people’s manners. And as Heather and I jokingly called, the "skinny-dipping plus” incident with the young boy who managed the home we rented. He was only a couple years older than her own son. The crazy thing is Luann doesn’t even deny it as she continues to say how inappropriate I am. And let’s not forget Jacques who she did have a relationship with and who was 10 years younger than her. Or her sleeping with Sonja’s ex-bf, Harry. She even wanted to be fixed up with a friend of Heather's, a man who had also once dated her niece. All the women know she lives in a glass house. They just didn’t say it as clearly as I did, understandably, because they weren’t on the receiving end of her punitive attacks.
She had been so unpleasant since our return from Turks and had said so many nasty things to me and about me in the press and on social media while the show was airing. Even as I tried to defend myself a little, she piled on even more female-bashing, anti-girlcode slurs. I expected at least an apology about her maniacal comment about me not having any children. Good thing I didn’t hold my breath waiting, because I’d be dead. At a certain point it's like trying to reason with a toddler. The audience will come to their own conclusions about who is right and who is wrong or someplace in between. It’s not for me to convince anyone. Maybe they will side with Luann, maybe they will think we are both nuts. We could be. But like I said, the fans are very astute and have very long memories.
Bravotv.com: Did you walk away from the reunion with any understanding of her side of things regarding your relationship with Adam?
CR: Luann tried to explain her side of things, and I really, truly did want to hear her, but she kept changing her story. First it was an age thing, then a family thing, then a girlfriends don't date the help thing. Honestly it seemed all a bunch of bull since she had never mentioned anything close to being “ill" at the sight of Adam and I during the eight months prior to the show airing. If she was, I’m sorry she didn’t come to me and tell me directly. That's what a friend does. Hey this is becoming a problem…Instead I was completely blindsided by her comments on the show and in the media. Of course, I’d be sorry if it caused her any grief, but I don’t think it did. It was a move by her to get attention and be more relevant. And still at the reunion her stories didn’t track. Her niece and Adam had long been broken up before Adam and I ever met. Not, as Luann continues to insist, "planning vacations together.” In fact, she was in a serious relationship with another man at the time. I don’t chase men, and I certainly don’t chase other women’s boyfriends. But listen, can I understand her niece being upset? Absolutely. Let’s be honest, aren’t we all secretly a little annoyed when we hear an ex has happily moved on? Maybe she had lingering feelings for him. Maybe she still held some hope they would get back together. I get it. I’ve been there, we’ve all been there, but it had been over for a year. And I was very respectful of her privacy. I was very respectful of their friendship. The thing I’ve learned is life moves on, and you have to move with it. So what is there left to say, except I wish everyone their own happiness. Especially Luann.