Teresa Giudice: Fame Has "Ruined My Family"
Teresa Giudice has not spoken to her brother, Joe Gorga, in more than a year, but the controversial Real Housewives of New Jersey star insists it's through no fault of her own.
Opening up to Anderson Cooper on Thursday's Anderson Live about how her relationship with Joe Gorga and his wife, Melissa, spiraled out of control, Giudice says that reality TV fame ruined her family.
"I've never gone without speaking with him. This Christmas was the first Christmas that I didn't see my brother," Giudice, 40, told Cooper and guest host Taraji P. Henson. "We used to always have Sunday dinners. You know when things got ruined? When they came on TV. It has been a year that I haven't spoken to him because of fame. I hear that fame ruins a family and it has ruined my family."
Giudice also alleges that the couple -- with whom she famously sparred on RHONJ's September 23 finale over Strippergate -- joined the show in 2009 without her knowledge or consent. Had they approached her in advance about taking part in Bravo's hit, Giudice told Cooper should would have welcomed them with open arms.
"They came on the show behind my back, Melissa and [cousin] Kathy [Wakile]. If they wanted to be on the show with me, I wish they would have just asked me," she said. "'Hey Teresa, can you get us on the show? We want the opportunities that you're having.' I would have done that. Now watching it a year later and seeing what my family is saying about me just breaks my heart."
Open to a reconciliation with her brother, Giudice told Cooper she forgave him long ago for his behavior, but he has yet to do the same. "He called me garbage. He's the one that lashed out to me at his son's christening. He used to put me on a silver platter, just like I used to put him on a silver platter," Giudice explained.
"I know I didn't do anything wrong," continued Giudice, who started a RHONJ firestorm when telling her brother his wife would leave him for a richer man. "I didn't maliciously mean to attack anyone."