Former “Real Housewives of New Jersey” star Dina Manzo has opened up why she quit the show and what her plans are after her stint on the Bravo series.
The reality star admitted that the move from New Jersey to California was prompted by her divorce from then-husband Tommy Manzo. She said it was hard for her and she needed to get away, and California felt strangely like home to her.
“I'm not gonna lie, it was my divorce,” Dina told Entertainment Tonight. “I wanted to run as far away as possible from what was going on, and my daughter was in college, and I was like, 'OK, I can pick up my animals and go anywhere I want.' And I did.”
Dina still appeared briefly after her exit, but the stint did not last long because she found it “horrific” to shoot with her sister Caroline Manzo and sister-in-law Jacqueline Laurita. The reality star said she agreed to be part of the series again because of Teresa Giudice and the payment offered by Bravo.
Despite not returning to the show, Dina remains in contact with Giudice. The reality star even said she was one of the very few people who were able to talk to Giudice while she was serving prison time.
“We kept in touch via email like daily,” Manzo told E! News, speaking of how they maintained their friendship during that time. “As a matter of fact in some odd way, I think it brought us closer because not many people had email access to her. I was one of the chosen ones.”
As for the possibility that fans will still see her in upcoming seasons, Dina was adamant when she told Fox 411 that she didn't know how it could possibly work. She said she's already accustomed to life in California, and that while she has a property on the East Coast, it's not in New Jersey.
“The Real Housewives of New Jersey” returns to Bravo on Aug. 14, 8 p.m. CST.