Erika Jayne’s Candid Quotes About Her 32-Year Age Difference With Husband Tom

She may be an enigma, wrapped in a riddle and cash, but sometimes, Erika Jayne Girardi gets candid about her life beyond the Bravo cameras.

The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star, who shares an adult son with her first husband, met her current husband, Tom Girardi, in the ‘90s when she was working at Chasen’s restaurant in Los Angeles.

“After a year of working in the restaurant, one night I decided to slip Tom my telephone number,” she recalled in her 2018 memoir, Pretty Mess. “We were standing in front of the giant fireplace. ‘Did you hear I was single?’ I asked.”

After the attorney, who is 32 years her senior, reached out through his secretary, however, Erika shut him down.

“I told her, ’Tell Mr. Girardi if he wants to take me out on a date, he needs to call me himself and ask me and give me enough time to prepare,’” Erika wrote. “You know how men are, especially if they are successful. They expect you to drop everything right away. That’s not how I work, I don’t care who you are.”

After six months of living together, he proposed at their home in Pasadena.

“He presented me with a beautiful diamond engagement ring. Of course I said yes,” she wrote. “After our engagement, Tom said, ‘Listen, I’ll buy you anything you want. I don’t care what it is. You name it. But I’m not wearing a wedding band. I never have, I never will. I don’t like it. It’s uncomfortable. Please don’t ask me to.’”

Erika agreed to Tom’s request, noting in her book that wedding rings “don’t have magical powers.” The twosome tied the knot with two witnesses in the clubhouse of their country club in 1999.

While the pair have been married for more than 20 years, the “Painkillr” songstress is often forced to defend their marriage due to their age difference. While Tom rarely appears on RHOBH, she has opened up about their relationship over the years.

Scroll through to read Erika’s most candid quotes about their marriage:

Life Before ‘Housewives’

Erika wrote in her book about her “busy and rewarding” life as Tom’s lawyer wife before she launched her own career.


“Aside from being Tom’s legal sounding board and voice of the layperson at dinners, I served other important functions, too. At a business dinner with another couple, I would entertain the wife while Tom was trying to settle a case. I’ve had to do a lot of that. Since Tom does so much business in social settings, my job as his wife is to help him close the deal,” she explained. “I’m also in charge of making sure that Tom’s suits are laid out. His things are hung up in the closet all paired out—each suit with a matching shirt and tie, as well as belts, socks, and shoes. I’m in charge of making sure that he has everything that he needs. That he has his particular toothpaste and his particular cologne.”



The Age Difference

“Tom is 33 years older than me. It was always a bigger deal to everyone else than it was to either of us. All a couple really needs is to have the same life philosophy. If you see things the same way, then age, race, religion—none of that comes into play,” she wrote in Pretty Mess. “I have a thirst for knowledge and Tom has a wealth of it. He is a great mentor, a great teacher and somebody I really admire … That kind of stuff is a powerful aphrodisiac.”


Shutterstock; Bravo

Their Sex Life

RHOBH newbie Garcelle Beauvais wasted no time asking Erika about her sex life with Tom, who was 80 at the time, during season 10 of the show.


“It’s OK, you know, people always ask that,” she said. “They’re always like, ‘What’s going on?’ Is it 20-year-old f—king all day long? No.”

Shutterstock; Inset: Bravo

Age Is Just a Number

Erika got emotional about her love for Tom during a April 2020 episode of the reality show when she landed her part in Chicago on Broadway.


“I’m tired of having to justify my 20-year marriage. Go get a 20-year marriage and then come f—king talk to me,” she told the cameras. “It’s great to have financial support. But having someone’s emotional support is something that I wish I had more of growing up.”


On Growing Old Together

Erika dished on her sex life with Tom on RHOA’s Kandi Burruss on her short-lived talk show, Kandi Koated Nights, in 2018.


“It’s not the same as it was in the beginning because other things take over, compassion, love, empathy, all of that, but that doesn’t mean that you can leave the physical component out of it,” Erika said. “You have to still keep that alive.”


She added that they have a healthy sex life because “it really is all about loving and trusting one another.”


“I think that’s what you really need to do, and if you like each other, then you’re communicating and then you’re making it work,” Erika said. “You talk, and you communicate and it changes and it peaks and it valleys and it changes and it’s cool. But as long as you’re communicating you’ll make it through.”


No Prenup

“Neither of us ever even thought to get a prenup. It never came up. Let’s be serious, Mr. Girardi knows the law so well that a prenup is not going to do s—t,” she wrote. “As any lawyer will tell you, there is always a way around a prenup, even if you think it is ironclad. Tom was going to protect himself no matter what, and what did I need to protect? The little red convertible and trash bags full of clothes I rolled up with? At the time, neither of us really thought we’d ever need one.”



Her Nickname for Tom

Erika told Bravo’s The Daily Dish in April 2020 that Tom is in her phone as “The Boss.”


“I don’t know what I’m in his phone as. Probably, you know, just my number,” she quipped. He’s ‘The Boss,’ but he always has been. I mean, that’s who he is, you know?”


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