“There was no healthy dialogue. There was no progressive communication. There were rules and the rules needed to be followed and when they weren’t, you were punished,” she told Us Weekly exclusively. “I come from an abusive childhood that I’m still processing and I think that person inside of me that hasn’t quite healed was attracted to the chaos of constantly proving yourself to someone and when they were disappointed in you, fighting harder for their approval.”
O’Day and Pauly D dated from February 2016 to July 2017. The twosome, who met filming E’s Famously Single, will appear on season 11 of Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars. The Danity Kane alum told Us that after her relationship with the Jersey Shore star, she “just wants to be with a man that’s kind.”
“I think I had to go through such an extreme state where I take responsibility in the fact that I allowed it and that I said ‘Yes’ every time,” O’Day explained. “I needed to be less and I justified it in my head as I can handle this. This is what this person needs to feel safe. I normally wouldn’t cross myself that much, but I got to this state after I turned 30 where I was like, I’ve chosen my career first every time … Any time a guy wanted more than my career, I sacrificed the guy. I wanted to choose the guy first this time because I want to get closer to having a family and children.”
“You have this list of five things you want out of your partner and after you turn 30, you’re more aware if you want to have children, you’re more aware of the timeline so then you start going ‘Oh, well I don’t really need all five, well maybe I just need four, well maybe three is OK,” she continued. “The things I wanted before I was with Pauly are much different than the things I want now.”
While O’Day said the relationship “completely stripped” her of “everything [she] loved about [herself],” she does not regret filming the WE tv series and putting their problems out there.
“I’m probably just now getting into the stage of recovery from that situation that I’m not dealing with that,” she explained. “Everybody’s got a job to do, so you may get killed in the edit of that job … They’re not really concerned about your feelings and the way that you experienced your stories don’t become yours the second that they call wrap on a show. They become a room full of people that have jobs to do. That’s scary.”
O’Day added: “I’m one of those girls that’s probably going to dangle on the cliff till the day I die. I like a challenge and I like pushing myself and I like learning so yeah, I’d probably do it again.”
Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars airs on WE tv Fridays at 9 p.m. ET.
Reporting by Jennifer Peros