The real reason Melissa and Joe Gorga skipped Teresa Giudice and Louie Ruelas’ wedding has finally been revealed, and it’s more sinister than you think!
All was made clear on the season 13 finale of The Real Housewives of New Jersey Tuesday, which saw Melissa share the “big secret” she said she’s been keeping to herself the last six months.
Opening up the morning after the finale party, Melissa said that it all started with the rumor that Melissa was caught hooking up with a man who is not her husband in the backseat of a car.
“For the last six months, I’ve been trying to keep this big secret, because I was doing everything in my power to keep the family together,” Melissa says.
“I didn’t want to say anything, because I was scared that they were going to ruin my wedding,” Teresa goes on to claim.
The episode then flashes back to the night of Dolores Catania’s Irish-themed, 1920s “prohibition” party, where everything came to a head.
Danielle Cabral breaks the news to Melissa that Margaret Josephs‘ former friend, Laura Jensen, told Jennifer Aydin and Teresa that Margaret has dirt on Melissa, claiming she was caught hooking up with a man who is not her husband. It’s then that Melissa stops Danielle and tells her she’s already heard this story… from her own husband.
“You wanna know how I heard it through my husband? ‘Cause his sister called him over to her house secretly without me to tell him this story behind my back. Pretty f**ked up sister-in-law I have, isn’t it?” Melissa fires back.
The longtime RHONJ star proceeded to break things down in a confessional, calling the rumor “baseless.”
“Six months ago, Teresa called Joe over with Louie, because she heard a rumor about me, and she believes it so much, that she had to call her brother over. How dare you tell my husband that I would cheat on him?” Melissa asks. “You’re saying this off a baseless rumor, from some woman who wants to hurt Margaret with no facts. No anything. Did she think he was just going to pack his bags and leave? Like, what the f**k are you doing?”
Fired up and frustrated at this point, Melissa tells Danielle that she should’ve called both Melissa and Teresa over to have this conversation. Danielle is confused by Melissa’s claim that Teresa would want the cheating rumor to be true — it becomes clear then that maybe Danielle isn’t too well-versed in the years-long back-and-forth between Melissa and her sister-in-law.
“Are you kidding me? Doll face, look at me. I have been accused of being a stripper. I have been accused of doing stuff in parking lots before,” Melissa says. “She’s said multiple times, ‘Your wife will leave you for a richer man.’ She’s said multiple things that we have let go in our life.”
Melissa shares that she had no intention of confronting Teresa about the meeting or the rumor because Joe himself doesn’t believe it.
“It’s bulls**t and because I wanted to let her have a peaceful six months leading up to her wedding,” Melissa says in a confessional. “And look what ends up happening: she has her minion make me look bad in front of everyone, so everyone can hear the words ‘Melissa’s a cheater,’ and I am done.”
Demanding to know why Teresa called Joe to the house to tell him about the alleged cheating, Melissa asks her sister-in-law for an explanation.
“First of all, it wasn’t his sister. It was Louie. He was like, ‘I wanna tell your brother that all this is coming from Margaret, so your brother can get in front of it,'” Teresa claims in a confessional. “So, he was looking out for my brother. And I never repeated it to anymore.”
At this point, the entire party is heated, with fights breaking out amongst nearly everyone on the cast. The group begins to separate into their couples as they unpack what just happened. After getting the play-by-play from Melissa, Joe sets things straight in a confessional.
“I get a call from Louie, ‘What are ya doin’? I need to see you right away. It’s very important.’ So, I go to her house and Louie says, ‘We heard that Melissa cheated on you.’ I go, ‘Guys, you got the wrong girl,'” Joe tells the cameras.
Melissa starts to believe the altercation was all a set-up and tells the cameras that she thinks Teresa knew Danielle was going to tell her at the party.
After more back-and-forth and a heated argument between Joe and Louie, the group disbands, with everyone starting to make their way home for the night.
It’s now the morning after the party and Melissa calls Dolores to go over the night’s events, it’s then she shares that she and Joe won’t be going to Teresa and Louie’s wedding.
“Dolores, how can I go and celebrate someone else’s marriage when they are the people that are constantly trying to destroy mine?” Melissa says. “I’m not doing it.”
Dolores tells Melissa if they don’t go to the wedding, then she and Joe’s relationship with Teresa is “over-over,” to which Melissa replies, “It’s been over.”
Already on the way to Teresa’s house, Dolores tells Melissa that she plans to tell Teresa about her decision to skip the wedding. And she does just that, breaking the news to the couple, who are just days away from getting married.
“They hate us,” Teresa says after finding out about Melissa’s decision. “Obviously, they’re not happy for us… This has been going on over 10 years. I dealt with it with my ex, I’m not going to deal with it in my new chapter of my life. I’m so done.”
Later in a confessional, Teresa says that she doesn’t want a family “like that,” if this is the way things are going to be.
“I know she’s been wanting to get my brother away from me all this time,” Teresa says of Melissa. “She got her wish. She got her wish.”
The season ends with Melissa and Teresa in a worse place than viewers have seen them to date, signaling that things between this family may really be “over-over.”
The Real Housewives of New Jersey airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Bravo.
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