The businessman, 47, took to Instagram to open up about his friendship with the Skinny Italian author, also 47, on Saturday, January 11.
“Don’t fall in! Whatever happens in our future, remember we were friends to begin with. We will always stay strong,” Joe captioned a photo slide show of the duo in happier times. “It’s not distance that breaks a couple it’s actions!”
He continued, “I’m growing and learning more from today’s generation. egocentrism was thing in baby boomer and gen x era. Now, Millennials believe in joint effort not separating roles. Not, that I didn’t love my era I see the ego thing got in my way like a trap. one bedroom is good Today, simplicity, girls and family first, and actions speak louder than a car or big things.💪🇮🇹👏☝️#familyiseverything #awakening #kids #future.”
Us Weekly confirmed Joe and Teresa’s split on December 17. “Teresa and Joe have separated, but have no plans to divorce yet,” a source said at the time. “Teresa and Joe talked about their future when she and the girls were in Italy and decided it was best for them to separate.”
The couple — who married in 1999 and welcomed daughters Gia, 18, Gabriella, 15, Milania, 13, and Audriana, 10 — lived apart for years before the split as a result of their legal drama. They pleaded guilty to 41 counts of fraud in 2014, including conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and three types of bankruptcy fraud. Teresa served 11 months in federal prison in 2015, while Joe’s 41-month prison sentence ended this past March.
Following Joe’s release from prison, he was detained in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody pending his court-ordered deportation to his native Italy. He was granted permission to leave ICE custody and travel to Italy in October.
“Neither of them wanted to be in a long-distance relationship,” the source added on Tuesday. “Joe has been dating in Italy, Teresa is busy taking care of their girls right now. 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.”
On television, the duo hedged expectations about their future in recent months. On the Real Housewives of New Jersey season 9 reunion in March, Teresa announced she and the businessman would go their separate ways if he was forced to return to Italy. “You know, I want somebody with me every day,” she said at the time. “I know exactly what happens. You know, I’m sure he’ll be with other women. It happens. We do the long-distance thing, it’s not going to work. I’d be like, ‘Bye-bye.’”
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