A Look Back at RHONJ Star Danielle Staub's Romantic History
The pair got engaged early Thursday morning while on a tropical getaway to the Cheval Blanc maison in St. Barth. They’re planning to fly back to the States to pick up her ring at Van Cleef, and say their “I dos” on Monday at a ceremony at the Justice of the Peace in New York City surrounded by friends, including Staub’s pal and RHONJ costar Teresa Giudice.
“I’m madly in love,” Staub tells PEOPLE. “I’m feeling elated and excited for the next stage of my life. I’m going to marry the man of my possible dreams and hopefully I’ll spend the rest of my life in bliss.”
This certainly isn’t the first time that Staub has fallen head over heels. The reality star has been engaged 21 times, and her past relationships have been a major subject of gossip among fellow New Jersey Housewives throughout the seasons.
Here’s a look back at the bride-to-be’s romantic history.
Staub has been married three times.
In 1986, Staub (who was born Beverly Ann Merrill) married her first husband, former FBI informant Kevin Maher, when she was 24 years old. After one year of marriage, the duo divorced in 1987.
Maher spoke openly about their past in his biography Cop Without a Badge.
The book (and the gossip surrounding it) was the catalyst for one of the RHONJ’s most iconic moments, when Giudice flipped a table while arguing with Staub during the season 1 finale. The two have made up since and even bonded over a shared love of yoga as they rekindled their friendship.
Six years later, Staub married her second husband, businessman Thomas N. Staub. The couple had two daughters together: Christine and Jillian. After 14 years of marriage, the pair divorced in 2007.
In an excerpt of her biography The Naked Truth, Staub reflected on her marriage to Thomas.
“From the outside, it seemed as if we had everything,” she wrote. “But on the inside, our relationship was hollow. It was no longer a marriage of love, and I wasn’t about to live a lie or stay in a marriage because a man was taking care of me and making things easy. Should I stay in a marriage because all of my bills were paid? … No, because that’s what a prostitute does.”
But in August 2018, Caffrey filed for divorce. Both were granted restraining orders against the other. Though they were later dropped, their fighting didn’t stop from there — with Caffrey putting their house on the market in November without telling Staub. She later filed a counterclaim in December to Caffrey’s divorce filing, alleging verbal and physical abuse as her reasons for seeking a separation. (Caffrey has denied all of Staub’s allegations.)
In October 2018, Staub told PEOPLE exclusively that she and Caffrey were never able to overcome their problems, but that she felt confident she would survive the drama.
“Fiercely I will push through this and like a warrior,” Staub said. “I will overcome everything like I always do. I will always land on my feet. And I’m not changing who I am. I might end up alone for the rest of my life, but I’ll be happy.”
“I try not to get hung up on everything too much and I try to remember that I have two daughters who are watching me, who I need to lead by example,” she added. “Every day gets a little bit better and a little bit easier for me. And I’m proud of myself. I’ve come a long way.”
Their divorce was finalized on Feb. 21. One week later, Staub became engaged to Maier.
Staub has been engaged 21 times.
In season 1 of RHONJ in 2009, Staub admitted she had been engaged 19 times (cue Giudice’s epic table flip).
“You were f—ing engaged 19 times!” Giudice (loudly) said.
Despite this revelation, the identities of her former fiancés are unknown.
Staub is proud to say she has a “healthy sex life.”
When it comes to Maher’s Cop Without A Badge, Staub has previously been forced to address certain things that were said about her in the book.
“I was never a prostitute. Never,” she told PEOPLE in 2009.
But did she boast of having bedded 1,000 men?
“I do enjoy a healthy sex life,” she said, “but with one partner [at a time].”