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August 10, 2015 02:00 PM

Teresa Giudice has more than five months to serve in prison before her release date, and The Real Housewives of New Jersey star wants her husband to go out and spend time with his friends.

“Teresa does want him to go out and take a break and enjoy himself once in a while because this is a difficult time for him,” a source tells PEOPLE. “He has a lot on his plate now.”

The father of four, 43, is set to begin serving a 41-month prison sentence for fraud after Teresa, also 43, is released is December.

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Despite rumors about the reality star’s bad behavior while Teresa is locked up, the source adds the couple are closer than ever.

“She thinks these stories [about him seeing other women] are ridiculous, and so does Joe. He is out with friends, who bring other people along. He tells her everything, calls her all the time and emails her all day long, so she always knows what he is up to,” says the source.

“He is a grown man, and he does go out of the house and attends functions and goes to dinner with his friends,” continues the source.

“If Joe literally stands next to someone, people immediately assume he is ‘with’ that person. He was photographed with one woman at an event whose fiancé was standing right behind them. People don’t have all the facts.”

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