The Real Housewives of New Jersey stars Melissa and Joe Gorga have seen their fair share of trouble this season, and much of it has seemingly stemmed from Melissa’s growing independence within her own life.
As one of RHONJ’s most solid couples, their ongoing drama throughout Season 11 came as a surprise to fans of the show. It left many wondering if deeper cracks were forming under the surface that would eventually see the demise of their marriage.
However, it doesn’t seem that everyone is concerned about the Gorga marriage. In fact, according to Melissa’s RHONJ co-star Dolores Catania, it may be as simple as Joe being afraid of Melissa’s personal growth. Still, she isn’t worried that their current struggles will end their marriage.
During a recent chat with Us Weekly, Dolores revealed why she thinks the couple has hit this roadblock and what will change once they realize what’s really going on.
Dolores says Joe is ‘scared’
It’s no secret that Joe Gorga values the traditional aspects of his marriage, including providing for his family while Melissa took care of the kids and their family home.
But as the kids got older, Melissa’s ambitions grew. She opened her store and expanded her professional horizon.
During this current season, fans saw a glimpse of insecurity in Joe when, after dinner and some drinks, Melissa walked away without him. Once in the vehicle, Joe shared his frustrations with Melissa and other RHONJ co-stars.
“Maybe we grew apart,” he told her.
While chatting with Us Weekly, Dolores shared that Joe and Melissa are going through something.
“They’re going through something where she’s growing and he’s afraid of losing the traditional marriage,” she explained. “[He’s] not, once he realizes that even letting her grow isn’t going to change the love that they have for each other…[but] he’s scared.”
Dolores continued stating, “Joe has it in his mind what life is supposed to be like.”
Joe’s ‘broken woman’ comment wasn’t ‘on purpose’ according to Dolores
In a recent episode, the RHONJ cast found out Dolores’ boyfriend, David Principe, had purchased her a new car and they were concerned that it was a symbol of David “stalling” on proposing to Dolores.
By the end of the night, Joe had had a few drinks and went on a rant where he called Dolores a “broken woman” and insinuated that because her ex-husband, Frank Catania, had cheated on her, she wasn’t looking for a real commitment. Dolores shared, “I don’t think he did it on purpose. I don’t think he was talking to Melissa subliminally…but he was talking about his thoughts. Like, he was saying to me, ‘You don’t want that freedom. You want someone to be on top of you, and you want a man to pull you back, and you want this.”
But as she further pointed out, Joe may not understand how Dolores may be happy in her relationship.
“It doesn’t mean somebody loves you any less because they give you the freedom in a relationship,” she said.
She concluded, “I think they’re secure. I think they’re okay. They’ll be fine. It was hard to see, but I always had a lot of faith that they would get through it.”
The Real Housewives of New Jersey airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on Bravo.