On this weekend’s episode of “Oprah: Where Are They Now?,” Food Network’s Gina Neely is opening up about her divorce with husband and former co-host Pat Neely. The TV “IT” couple that hosted Down Home with the Neelys were married for 19-years before their surprising split in 2014.
“He felt like we didn’t spend enough time together,” Gina explained to Where Are They Now? “I felt like we did and we needed a little space.”
She went on to say that their relationship was not as solid as people thought —she was already considering divorce by the time the two started their show together.
“I was thinking about divorce right before we got the TV show. We went to therapy 12 times. I tried to leave five times, and I just didn’t have the strength. But the fifth time, I held onto that.”
She added, “It became necessary for me to find my path. And I knew I wasn’t happy. I said, ‘I’m definitely not going to [turn] 50 and not be happy.’ So, at 46, I started changing my life…. I realized I liked that better.”
However “Pat’s not a bad guy, he’s just not for me,” she stressed about her high school sweetheart.
Neely also admits that despite being on for a whopping 11 seasons, she never wanted to do the show and that it made her already troubled relationship even worse as she had to work too hard to give Pat the spotlight.
“The crazy part about it was, I never wanted to do that show. I never wanted to live my life quite out loud like that,” she said. “I found myself kind of trying to dim my light to make his light shine, and that’s never a good thing.”
While Pat has yet to speak, here’s what we do know: Divorce is never easy for anyone involved. And there’s something to be said for a woman who has exhausted all of her possibilities and finally decides to put her happiness above all else. Gina, we wish you all the luck in the world.
Where Are They Now? airs on Saturday at 10 p.m. on OWN.