"It was frustrating for both of us," says Kelly's husband Douglas Brunt

By Emily Strohm
Updated May 11, 2016 12:30 PM
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Douglas Friedman

Megyn Kelly‘s husband Douglas Brunt knows all too well that taking the high road isn’t exactly easy.

After Kelly became the target of frequent verbal attacks from Donald Trump starting just a day after she moderated the first Republican debate, Brunt says the difficult experience brought the couple closer together.

“You see this person that you love getting attacked, and you want to protect them and help them, and we just sought each other’s council a lot,” Brunt tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue.

“It was so relentless. So, you want to hit back, and ‘God, this is driving me nuts,’ but the smart thing, the right thing, is not to do anything.”

Trump, 69, told PEOPLE in March that that he didn’t believe Kelly treated him fairly when she moderated the August debate.

As the presidential candidate continued with his Twitter attacks urging his followers to boycott her show and calling her “sick” and “the most overrated person on television,” Brunt, 44, and Kelly, 45, focused on family.

“It was like this giant obstacle and onslaught and you’re in the bunker together,” he says.

For more on Megyn Kelly, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday

Now with Kelly’s highly anticipated interview with Trump as a part of her primetime special Megyn Kelly Presents just days away, airing May 17 on Fox broadcast network, she and her husband are looking forward to putting this past them. (Kelly will also interview Michael Douglas, Laverne Cox and Robert Shapiro as a part of the upcoming hour-long special).

“This is the one opportunity to sit down with him, discuss it to some extent and then move on in every way,” Kelly says.