Frank and Dolores Catania’s significant others haven’t always been warmly welcomed by each other, their children, or the “Real Housewives of New Jersey” cast, but that’s not the case for his new girlfriend, Brittany Mattessich.
In an exclusive interview with Vidak For Congress, Frank admitted that the ex-husbands’ daughter, Gabby, is his “shartest critic” when it comes to dating — but even she loves the blonde bombshell.
“Gabby says, ‘How don’t you like Brittany? You can’t help but like Brittany!’ … It’s not just my daughter, it’s the whole family, and so is Dolores!” said Frank excitedly.
Mattessich, who joined us for the chat, let out a “thank God” when we asked how she felt being accepted by the Catania clan like this.
“Oh, I love it,” she gushed. “You know, that’s all you ever want.”
According to the couple – who have been friends for 10 years, romantically for three years and have been in a serious relationship for the past “six to eight months” – Mattessich was also greeted with open arms by Dolores’ co-stars.
“Brittany started filming this year,” Frank said with a smile, noting that “everyone in the cast likes her. You can’t start with Brittany. There’s no arguing with Brittany. You just can’t. that does make you look bad.”
“I also try to keep her away from any controversy. I’ll intervene before it gets anywhere,” the peacekeeper’s apparent season finale added.
Frank also shared that Bravo cameras rolled as he and Dolores had a “family gathering” with their children, which included Frankie Jr., and Dolores’ boyfriend, Paul “Paulie” Connell.
Frank and Dolores have an admittedly unconventional relationship, as the ex-boyfriends still vacation together and even lived together long after their divorce. But Frank said his friendship with Dolores has not affected his relationship with Mattessich.
“Before me and Brittany were an item, she knew the relationship between Dolores and me. And she knew Dolores; she was near Dolores. And when we started dating, I have to be honest, it wasn’t a problem at all,” he told us.
“Brittany came by, [and] it took her a while to get used to the semantics. But honestly, Brittany is just fine. And the more someone interacts with Dolores and I on a casual basis, you realize there’s nothing to worry about,” he continued.
“And that’s kind of a hurdle we have with Dolores’ new boyfriend, so we’re trying to get over that,” he added of the Irish businessman, who Frank previously said looks like Buzz Lightyear.
‘We are coming. We’re doing pretty well,” Frank commented on the foursome’s ability to coexist, revealing that they even went on a double date recently.
While the dynamics are “getting much, much better,” Frank warned that his relationship with Connell “will never get to the point of me and David [Principe]— Dolores’ ex-boyfriend Frank befriended and even lived together for a while.
“I mean, David is one of my best friends,” Frank gushed before acknowledging that that might add to the “hurdles” he’s experiencing with Connell.
“Maybe a little bit [bother Connell]But I have to tell you, when Dolores and David first broke up, Dolores said to me and the kids, ‘Guys, please, you have your own relationship with him. Don’t let my relationship with him affect that.’ And frankly not,” Frank said, adding that he just “wants to see Dolores happy.”
In fact, Dolores is so happy that Frank said this was the first summer she’s had “the [Jersey] Shore House and hang out with us.’
As for Mattessich, who met Frank while serving as her fitness competition trainer, she told us she was “always in love” with the Garden State hunk.
“Same as Teresa [Giudice] did when Frank helped her. I did the same – bikini,” Mattessich explained, with Frank intervening proudly, “And she won! She won all her shows.”
But with so many Bravo fans also in love with Frank (and his similar son)how is matthessich coping?
“It’s a lot,” she admitted before admitting she feels she’s handling it “very well.”
“I don’t know if many other girls could do it,” she said. “But I think I’m doing well. Right, dear?”
Frank agreed, noting that “half the time she’s the one taking the picture!”
“Brittany is a very safe person,” he added. “She has thin skin, but she’s very safe.”