The businessman, 47, posted a black and white photo to social media that read, “Every next level of your life will demand a different you,” on Wednesday, December 18. Though Joe did not specifically comment on the divorce news in the post, fans were quick to make the connection between the powerful message and the Real Housewives of New Jersey stars’ split.
Supportive messages from friends and fans flooded the comments. Some Instagram users reminded Joe that “everything will be okay,” while others sent him “love and happiness.”
The Bravo stars tied the knot in October 1999 and renewed their vows in a fairy tale-themed ceremony in September 2011. On Tuesday, December 17, a source told Us, “Teresa and Joe have separated, but have no plans to divorce yet. Teresa and Joe talked about their future when she and the girls were in Italy and decided it was best for them to separate. Neither of them wanted to be in a long distance relationship.”
In November, Teresa reunited with her estranged husband in Salerno, Italy. Following his 41-month prison sentence for previous fraud and tax indictments, Joe was placed into Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody and ordered to return to his native country in March. At the time, a judge denied the former construction business owner’s appeal in the deportation case. Joe was released from ICE custody in October and flew to Italy to await the final decision in his deportation case.
The Standing Strong author brought her four daughters — Gia, 18, Gabriella, 15, Milania, 13, and Audriana, 10 — to visit their father in Italy for a reunion that was filmed for Bravo. Upon confirming the couple’s separation, a source explained to Us that Teresa and Joe’s first priority will always be to make sure their girls are happy.
“Teresa is busy taking care of their girls right now,” the insider said. “They harbor no ill will towards each other and will continue to coparent their kids. The girls will be going to Italy in December, Teresa will be staying home.”
For access to all our exclusive celebrity videos and interviews – Subscribe on YouTube!