Rachael Ray on her marriage: We don’t take it to heart when one person has to vent

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Yesterday, we heard how Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelo solve all their issues with sex. Now let’s discuss Rachel Ray and husband John Cusimano’s approach to marriage: venting. Rachel and John have been married for 16 years. They don’t have kids, but they do have dogs. They have also had a heck of a year. When the pandemic hit, Rachel decided to broadcast her show from their home, which up until that point had been off limits to the public. So their safe space quickly became public space. Not only that, John took on the role of helping Rachel produce the show, something he did not enjoy nor was he particularly gifted at. And then tragedy struck when their home burned to the ground, and they narrowly escaped. Rachel said their secret to getting through all that together is by not take it too personally when the other is letting off a little steam.

Rachael Ray and her husband, John Cusimano, marked their 16th wedding anniversary this month — a milestone for any couple, but especially worth celebrating considering all the life difficulties thrown towards the couple this year.

In May of that year, the couple’s cherished 15-year-old pit bull, Isaboo, died. Then last August, their home — the one Ray had designed from scratch 15 years earlier and long tried to protect from the public — completely burned to the ground, the result of a fire ember that came out of the home’s chimney and landed on the roof.

It took them a full year to rebuild. Throughout it, and all of the year’s other obstacles, Ray and Cusimano, 53, remained a united force to get to the other side.

“We have volatile personalities but we’re both very practical. too,” she says. “That’s the lawyer side of him and the domestic side of me. We’re like, ‘These are the things that must be accomplished today. And we will get to this only by doing what work is necessary.’”

“John and I didn’t meet until later in life, and didn’t get married until we were almost 40,” Ray says. “We knew who we were. We’ve always been that way, for 20 years. We don’t take it too much to heart when one person just has to vent or blow up. We’re very good at being quiet also, with each other. We don’t look for there to be constant chatter. And we’re very good with giving each other space to work on our passions. We’re kind of autonomous and I think, in many ways, we were more uniquely prepared for this pandemic.”

“When you’re left at home alone for too long, you start to lose a little perspective. You can get tunnel vision and think, ‘Everything’s revolving around us and our little problems.’ But there are so much worse positions we could be in,” Ray says. “I’m alive. I have a roof over my head. I have a job. There are people all over the food industry who have suffered and don’t know what to do. Not to mention the millions of people who have died.”

“At the end of the day, John and I, we always come back to grateful. Some days are different than others, but we try to say, ‘Okay, here’s the new plan,’ even when we get down,” Ray continues — joking, “We’re like Moonstruck over here. We just keep saying, ‘Stop your whining and snap out of it.’ “

[From People]

I can follow this advice better than letting sex solve my problems. Obviously, it’s not a carte blanche. Letting off steam shouldn’t become a personal attack. But sometimes everything does build to a head, and it feels good to just vent about it. And it feels so good to be heard. Many couples can decipher when their partner is mad at them or at the world in general. The pandemic was really hard on people used to their own space and schedules like Rachel and John. Being around the same person/people for that length of time took its toll, no matter how much you loved them or how well you lived together. I resorted back to my tricks when my kids were toddlers and stayed in the bathroom for longer than I needed. I needed a space no one could get to me. So I get where Rachel is coming from on this.

And the hits just keep coming for Rachel and John. They’ve just rebuilt their home upstate. It took a full year. Thank goodness it’s finally done, though, because their apartment in New York City was wiped out by Hurricane Ida. Rachel said the floodwaters came in from everywhere and the apartment, “just literally melted, like in Wicked.” They waited a full week for the overworked remediation team to come and assess the damage. When they finally got there, they burst a water pipe and re-flooded the whole building. Rachel chose, once again, to remind herself how many advantages she has and how much worse others have it. She has a new book coming out on October 26th called This Must Be the Place. If it has any secrets on how to bottle Rachel’s positivity when the cards are down, I’ll buy a dozen copies.

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Photo credit: Avalon Red and Instagram

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13 Responses to “Rachael Ray on her marriage: We don’t take it to heart when one person has to vent”

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  1. Becks1 says:

    I’ve always loved Rachael Ray, and even more so over the last year. Her positivity in the face of a tragedy like the house fire was very inspiring. She just comes across as very authentic, even with her quirks that may not be for everybody (I always say “EVOO” since watching her show LOL).

  2. mellie says:

    Yes, this is more how my marriage works and it might be because we’re a little bit older that Mark/Kelly, I don’t know. We both work from home now (after years of going into the office) and it can get a little snippy around here too. But we always end up laughing it off. We’re not a steamy couple, more of a Birkenstock than a stiletto…….and I’m good with that. I love my guy. I do love RR, she just seems down to earth. And kind.

  3. Pork chops & Apple sauce says:

    I actually do feel for her, she’s worked hard her entire adult life for what she has, BUT how does a sixth floor apartment get flooded. I live in the NY Metro area and Ida was SCARY and destructive but I’m baffled as to how her place flooded so seriously? Was the breach in the roof? That must be what it was…

    • Persephone says:

      My sister in NJ had this happen to her apartment – water came in through the seams (walls), windows, everything.

      • paranormalgirl says:

        It was terrible here. My neighbors had their retaining wall collapse and destroy their lower floor.

  4. Monica says:

    Aw, I like her and feel for her. She’s gotten so much crap for her idiosyncrasies over the years, but she seems like the real deal.

  5. Leigh says:

    I don’t watch these days, but I loved to watch 30 minute meals when I was in high school. She really sparked my love of cooking and I still use a lot of her tricks and tips today.

  6. USAF retired says:

    She’s okay. I’ve never been her biggest fan but my husband – who retired WAY EARLY last year – and I sort-of watch her show each weekday morning because it’s about all that’s on at that hour and we’re just getting around.

    So, we joke, “Rachel’s making pasta again!” We like pasta but if you watch her show, it’s in almost every episode. That’s okay. Certainly there are people who could eat pasta everyday.
    Here is my thing/things: She’s a spotlight hog. She has guests zooming in and trying to show us a recipe and she has to just make noise and comments and interrupt constantly and she won’t even let her husband make a cocktail without correcting him and commenting constantly.
    We don’t like it but my husband who is originally from CT/New England says it’s rather common for New York Italians. I don’t know.

    Other thing and I’m being petty but we think they aren’t very clean and maybe smell.
    She says they film 5 eps in one day. Would it kill her to shower and brush her hair? And they sleep with a big dog in the bed. I kind of get hippie vibes but GOD LOVE HER.
    She has had a rough year and is still smiling. Of course, she’s rich and I can’t fault her for making that on her own but people forget when she did her show about eating out on $40. a day and would leave a 10% tip and said it was plenty and I seem to remember a lawsuit when her late Pit attacked another dog BUT it’s cool that she cooks for all the neighbors.
    They even built a little shed with a fridge/freezer in it so neighbors can help themselves. That’s nice.

    Anyway, I’m sure they get on each other’s nerves especially this past year and they don’t seem to go anywhere anymore, so, always together. Good they’ve figured it out.

    One other thing: Did you know he’s a Lawyer? He’s her lawyer. I didn’t know that until recently.

    • Jaded says:

      They aren’t clean?? You’re really scraping the bottom of the barrel with that one. And your crack about NY Italians is wayyyy off the mark. Italians are passionate about their food and appreciate it being cooked properly with the best ingredients, that’s all. Oh, and loads of people sleep with their dog or cat on the bed. I do.

      • USAF retired says:

        Are you okay? You seem a little over sensitive on these subjects.
        I said I was being petty about the cleanliness thing but it’s still an impression/opinion and I didn’t make a crack about New York Italians.
        My husband mentioned his experiences with them. Other than t.v. and movies, I don’t know any New York Italians.
        Anyway, take a breath and I don’t care if you or anyone else sleeps with pets.
        I don’t think a big dog in the bed is sanitary but that’s also my opinion.
        I also think she makes simple recipes more complicated than they need to be and I’m an experienced cook. Do you even watch her show? She’ll take a simple recipe and make it with 20 ingredients while 3 burners, the oven and the microwave are all on.

      • Jaded says:

        I do know some NY Italians. I’ve been to NY many times and Italy several times. I too am a very experienced cook. I’m not a huge fan of her cooking either but insinuating she’s not clean is simply ridiculous.

      • Agreatreckoning says:

        @USAF retired, I think Jaded is more than okay.imo Nice that you asked. Is that really the question you want to ask someone after basically, albeit in your opinion, writing a post that you think Rachel & her husband are dirty, smelly and cheap New York Italians? Not cool. And he’s a lawyer! Which isn’t a crime I’m aware of. Rachel is also French, English & Welsh with being half Sicilian. She looks like she showers & brushes her hair to me. The model of $40 a day was to stay within a budget. (A show of R. Ray’s I did watch). I don’t remember her saying ‘that’s pleny” with a tip. Could be wrong. For all we know she slipped $ to the wait staff when cameras were turned off or the restaurant/staff were just happy getting national attention.

        The majority of Rachel’s ingredients individually listed are usually spices/pantry items. You don’t have to like her. By your posting name, my first inclination is to think United States Air Force. (have family retired from there) I also know the honor code with the academy. Only mention that because you brought up a lawsuit against her dog-which it wasn’t. It was a lawsuit against her dog food brand-that was dismissed. The National Enquirer put out the story about her dog. Not exactly the best source. That story didn’t have legs. But, as you said, she’s still smiling after a rough year. So, I’m hoping you were misguided in believing something as a potential retired member of the United States Air Force or Armed Forces and not just someone acting under the acronym of USAF. Which, also could mean United States Armwrestling Federation and other things.

  7. Jaded says:

    She took a lot of crap from jerks like Bobby Flay (and Anthony Bourdain earlier on but I still love him) but honestly, she’s never presented herself as a top chef. She, like Valerie Bertinelli, fills a gap in cooking shows that have ignored the rushed off their feet working women and mothers who don’t have time to make elegant reductions, rich sauces, with hard to find/expensive ingredients just for bragging rights. Her food is simple, tasty and easy to prepare for us regular folk who don’t cook Michelin star level dishes.