Real Housewives Star Is Disgusted That The Internet Is Calling Her Husband Rapey

51ZAlJ52aqL._SY344_PJlook-inside-v2,TopRight,1,0_SH20_BO1,204,203,200___1380386974_142.196.156.251I hate that this story has surfaced because now I feel like I have to admit that I watch the Real Housewives of (insert city here). Seriously, you can insert pretty much any city because I watch all of them. Except Miami. I also watch all of the lesser spin-offs like Basketball Wives and Mob Wives. But this isn’t about my horrible taste in television. It’s about Melissa Gorga of the Real Housewives of New Jersey and her book, Love Italian Style.

We’ll just clarify that “Italian Stye” equals, “give your husband sex whenever he wants it, even if he’s totally skeeving you out and you don’t want it at all.” Anyone who watches the show knows that her husband, Joe Gorga, is constantly groping her and she’s constantly looking slightly disgusted and annoyed by him. But this is what makes a healthy marriage, as far as Melissa is concerned. You need to make yourself available sexually for your man at all times lest he fall into the arms of another woman. I’m paraphrasing – a little:

Even when I’m exhausted and not really in the mood, if it means a lot to Joe that we connect physically, I’ll say, “I’m not so into it tonight, but let’s go.”

If it’s a hard “no,” I try to be nice about it. Don’t swat him away, or say with a tone, “Leave me alone!” Eventually he will leave you alone at more than you wish he would.

This quote wouldn’t seem so gross if it wasn’t repeated in a variety of different ways throughout the book:

In the beginning, Joe wanted to have sex every single day, at least once, if not twice or three times…If I didn’t give it to him once a day, he’d get upset.

[A] woman needs to keep herself in shape. She has to be seductive. She must be willing to try new things for her husband’s pleasure and her own. And, most important, she has to be available for sex.

Okay, so we all must be “available” for sex, even if we don’t want it. Obviously, there has been a backlash against the book because many feel it is advocating marital rape, to which Melissa says:

I don’t know how anyone can… My book is about mutual respect with your partner, for one another. It’s about honesty, it’s about loyalty, it’s about making your partner first in your life. Where that word comes into play, to me, is awful and disgusting, to be honest with you.

I’m going to guess that word came into play when, in addition to all of your troubling “advice,” your husband was quoted in the book as saying, “If your wife says “no,” turn her around, and rip her clothes off. She wants to be dominated.”

I actually feel kind of sorry for her because she somehow thinks his behavior is okay. But my fleeting compassion is extinguished by my disgust that she is advocating that women be okay with being “taken” raped by their husbands.

“I stand by what I said,” she added. “I truly believe in everything I said in it.”


(photo: Amazon)

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  • Cee

    Ugh…all the quotes give me a rage stroke!

  • guest 1

    Intent and purposes, not intensive purposes. Exactly what are the requirements for writing for Mommyish?

    • Cee

      To my understanding, most of them are just drunk toddlers with computers. Or, you know, humans making mistakes at times.

    • Maria Guido

      I love you.

    • Maria Guido

      I have no idea how that happened.

  • Kelby Johnson

    I was in one of these types of relationships and it is not very fun at all. I had the same mentality that I was at his beck and call for his pleasure. I was brainwashed. He was my first everything and I thought that was how relationships worked. Looking back, it was honestly the worst 4 years of my life.

    I honestly feel sorry for her. Both because she thinks this is okay and because she is being raped by her husband.

    • Suni

      Seems to me the “victim” should be the one to decide if it was rape or not. If she says it isn’t rape, that’s good enough for me.

    • Jayamama

      There are many victims of rape out there who didn’t realize it was rape until a while after the fact. That doesn’t change what happened. Maybe she didn’t want it, but she didn’t say the actual word “no” so she thinks that she deserved it. Or maybe she thinks that if she was drunk, then what he did was understandable. Or maybe she doesn’t think it’s possible to be raped by your husband. It doesn’t change the definition of rape.

    • Muggle

      I was in this type of relationship too as a teenager. I was scared to say no because I didn’t want the guy to get mad at me. Fortunately it was “only” six months, but I’d been avoiding him for a while by that point, and two of my friends had to intervene on a band trip. I didn’t realize what kind of fuckery was going on until about six months after *that* when he wouldn’t even give me the time of day, even though being in band meant we had to work together sometimes. Argh.

  • Mae Blackwood

    It wouldn’t seem so bad if it were a mutual thing, but it doesn’t really feel like it by the description given. Although, I’ve not read the book nor have I watched any of the show.

    It sounds more like, “I’m terrified my man will stray if I don’t put out as often as he wants it.” Which is depressing.

    • meteor_echo

      This book really does advocate marital rape, too. It’s been discussed on Oh No, They Didn’t (a Livejournal community that I like), and apparently, her husband wrote some parts of the book, in which he recommends to tear the wife’s clothes down even if she isn’t in the mood for sex and says no.
      My jaw made a hole in the floor when I read that gem.

    • Mae Blackwood

      I always skim over the Real Housewives stuff on ONTD, I guess I should’ve read something on the book there for even more cringe-worthy stuff.

      That is horrible. D; I’d go into straight attack mode if my fiance tried that. It makes me wonder how she handled that the first time he did it. I don’t see how that could’ve gone great.

    • JLH1986

      So HE is advocating marital rape and she didn’t correct him. Ok I’m on board now. I was thinking while it wasn’t the way my relationship works if she’s ok with it…but now this makes sense.

    • Fabel

      Yeah, when I first read about this, I was like, “eh, maybe it’s a mutual thing that looks off to the observer’s eye” but with this additional info? Very Not Okay.

    • Mae Blackwood

      I was the same way. I thought of what my fiance and I do and thought that could seem off to someone who doesn’t understand that he knows the difference between a playful ‘stop’ and a ‘no, really, stop.’ And he knows if I’m not into it at the time, so I’ve never felt forced into anything ever.

      All of this, on the other hand, sounds very forced.

  • Byron

    I have trouble with some of the wordings intersperced here. “Give” sex? Are women the sole arbitors of having sex? Do they hold all the keys? I’m pretty sure it takes two, I’m pretty sure the woman is being “given” sex by her husband each and every time she is giving it to him too.

    This is the kind of wording which makes calling women sluts easy. Writing as though women are the ones that have to be coaxed into sex and that the act of doing so is “rapey” (which lends itself to the implication that women who need no coaxing are “sluts”).

    Sometimes guys don’t feel like sex either (yes, that actually happens!) but if you start being seductive and groping them you can turn them around and you would NEVER be accused of having raped them by doing that or even more intense things. Even if a guy really doesn’t wanna have sex, if you change his mind about it, he’ll most deifnitely be happy and NOBODY would call your acts questionable. Some may call you slutty but nobody will call you a rapist.

    In long relationships, once courtship has concluded, sometimes things can get stale and keeping up the game of seduction and the feel of chasing to attain something you desire can be a good tool in keeping things interesting, for both parties.

  • Gangle

    This is the bit from the book that creeps me out the most:

    His style was to make corrections and to teach me from the beginning days of our marriage exactly how he envisioned our life together. Joe always says, “You got to teach someone to walk straight on the knife. If you slip, you’re going to get cut.” Even if something didn’t bother him that badly, he’d bring it up. He wanted to make sure that I knew, for example, if I ran out to CVS and he came home from work to an empty house, he didn’t like it. He’d call me and say, “I don’t care if you’re out all day long. But I don’t want to come home to an empty house.”

    If you slip you are going to get cut? Um, yeah…

    • Annie

      I’m kind of shocked that her publicist let this slip. But on the other hand, more people are going to be watching the show now, going through each interaction between these people with a magnifying glass. The whole thing is ghoulish.

    • Gangle

      I agree with you. I think that her publicist, her editor and the publishers were counting on people being outraged – therefore buy the book to be outraged and shocked by it, therefore watch the show to be more outraged, therefore discuss it on forums etc. The whole thing is generating its own free press. It’s a cutthroat and cynical move, but it works I guess. I just hope nobody takes the content seriously.

    • Annie

      Urgh, I hadn’t even thought of that. :/

    • Courtney Lynn

      He sounds like my ex. CONTROLLING!

  • Blueathena623

    Come on lady, there is a difference between not being in the mood but trying anyway and not being in the mood but fearing the consequence of saying no. Sometimes my husband or I (yes it goes both ways) is not in the mood, but if the other one is we will sometimes ask for 5 minutes to convince them. I’m not sure either of us has ever said “stop” after 5 minutes, but its nice to know we can.

  • Angela

    This is marital rape and it’s disgusting. But I just can’t muster a lot of outrage for a victim that’s clearly in denial, even if she is perpetrating these harmful sentiments. Mostly I just feel pity for her and sad for a society that teaches women that we don’t matter.

  • Justme

    If you’re seriously taking relationship advice from a Real Housewife, you have bigger issues than your intimacy with your husband.

  • Guest555

    Who knew this lady n Michelle Dugger had so much in common.