Learning from experience. Margaret Josephs’ first marriage ended after she had an affair with her now-husband, so she would not fault her Real Housewives of New Jersey costar Teresa Giudice if she cheated on Joe Giudice.
“They’re rumors, but I wouldn’t blame her,” Margaret, 52, tells Us Weekly exclusively, referencing speculation that Teresa, 47, has been seeing New Jersey-based realtor Blake Schreck. “I mean, everything’s circumstantial. I don’t know what goes on behind closed doors, and I am the last person to judge anybody cheating, considering the way I met my husband. And that’s what I stand by.”
The fashion designer and her first husband, Jan Josephs, divorced in 2013 after 19 years of marriage. The former couple’s split was caused by Margaret’s affair with her current husband, Joe Benigno, whom she wed later in 2013.
“My goal is for all my friends to be happy, and Teresa’s been through it,” the Macbeth Collection founder tells Us. “So, of course, that was my stance all along. I wouldn’t blame her, and I’m not one to judge cheating rumors.”
In the trailer for season 10 of the Bravo reality series, Margaret told costar Melissa Gorga that Teresa has been “cocktailing it up with some young guy,” seemingly referencing 26-year-old Blake. The Standing Strong author, 47, fired back, “Who said I was cheating? That’s f–ked up!”
Teresa and Blake were first spotted together on New Year’s Eve in December 2018. They traveled to Miami with friends in February as Joe, also 47, served the final days of his 41-month prison sentence for fraud. Teresa and Blake were seen together once more in June while having cocktails at a rooftop bar in New York City. Her attorney, James J. Leonard Jr., has brushed off the pair’s relationship as “100 percent strictly business.”
The drama between Teresa and Joe — who share daughters Gia, 18, Gabriella, 15, Milania, 13, and Audriana, 10 — is expected to be a major story line on season 10 of RHONJ. After being released from prison in March, Joe was transferred to Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody. He left the ICE facility on October 11 and flew to his native Italy amid his deportation case. The status of the couple’s marriage seemed up in the air during their tell-all interview with Andy Cohen, which aired on October 27.
“I am just always here for Teresa,” Margaret tells Us. “I always text her. I always check in, regardless of all any issue we’ve ever had. … She knows that I always stand by her, and I’m always thinking of her and the girls and just being supportive for her. Whatever she needs from me, emotional support, anything. Anything she would ever need from me.”
The Real Housewives of New Jersey season 10 premieres on Bravo Wednesday, November 6, at 8 p.m. ET.
With reporting by Brody Brown