“Because I really know who I am,” Radziwill told PEOPLE of how she preserves her sense of self when surrounded by the chaos of the show.
“There’s humor in it. Sometimes I take it too seriously and I have to remind myself to put it into perspective and when I do I’m having a good time,” she continued at Good Housekeeping and L’Oréal Paris‘ “50 Over 50” event Tuesday. “I don’t mind hiding in a closet and eavesdropping, and doing silly things like that because the whole thing is kind of silly. It’s six women having a sleepover and we’re all 50. I just like to have fun with it.”
Radziwill, 52, says she would not have been so successful on a show like RHONY if she had done it when she was younger.
“If there was anything I would do now that I never would have done when I was younger, it’s a reality show,” she said. “I could only do it now because I am so grounded in who I am, so there’s no fear that I am suddenly going to become this crazy, screaming lunatic.”
Meaning, she won’t be attacking her arch nemesis LuAnn de Lesseps the way her costar and friend Bethenny Frankel did in last week’s episode any time soon. But mostly because she said she’s over their feud.
“I’ve come to terms with who LuAnn is and what our friendship will be. I think what happened is that I thought our relationship was something that it wasn’t. And that’s on me,” the novelist and journalist admitted. “I felt like at a certain point after two seasons on the show, I thought that we were genuinely friends and it didn’t end that well for me.”
Radziwill might forgive, but she will not forget.
“She said incredibly hurtful things that anyone would be upset by, especially from someone you consider a friend. But I kind of reevaluated that and thought, ‘Okay, Carole, this is who she is, and she’s not a bad person.’ So I relate to her differently.”
The “hurtful things” Radziwill referred to are words like “pedophile” that De Lesseps slung her way when she found out Radziwill was dating Adam Kenworthy, a 30-year-old chef who had ties to De Lesseps’ niece. But Radziwill won’t let that affect her relationship.
“There’s not a lot of baggage,” Radziwill said of the benefits of dating a younger guy. “It’s not really an age thing. Particular to Adam, there’s an innocence there and a newness and a curiosity that is nice.”
She added that age isn’t a focus for her in her dating life.
“I don’t think I wouldn’t date someone because they’re 60 or 30. That’s not one of the top three criteria. For me, it’s good values, integrity and character,” she said. “And looks, and personality. I mean, let’s be honest: You have to look cute and have a good personality.”
The Real Housewives of New York City airs Wednesdays (9 p.m. ET) on Bravo.