Olivia Jade Giannulli is opening up about how the now infamous college admissions scandal has affected her and her family. On an episode of her podcast, Conversations With Olivia Jade, she sat down with sister Bella to reflect on the experience and defend their mother, Lori Loughlin.
Giannulli Sisters Reflect On Scandal
Referring to the 2019 bribery scandal as a “thingy thing with our family,” the two reflected on how the situation impacted their mental health and their relationship with their mother. “We both have a really clear perspective … we can just say we’re in the wrong,” the Dancing With the Stars contestant said. “I don’t want that generic kind of topic to be twisted that I’m sitting here asking about mental health and what we went through the last few years and people saying, ‘Are they seriously complaining about this?'”
“It’s not complaining,” Bella interjected. “You have to take what you’ve been through and learn from that. That’s what talking about it and working through it does.”
The two also talked about how almost all of the media coverage was centered on Olivia and their parents, Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli. “I think just the hardest part of this entire thing was watching how horrible, or reading or seeing, how horrible the media was to both you and mom,” said Bella. “And actually knowing you guys and knowing mom has the biggest heart.”
Olivia agreed with her sister, saying, “I think that was hard for me too. I’m not trying to justify or excuse behavior or throw a pity party….I do very heavily relate to those feelings that you were just saying about mom. I think for me, even though I also was getting dragged negatively, it didn’t nearly affect me as much as seeing mom getting….she really took this whole thing on her back solely.”
Lori Loughlin And Husband Served Jail Time
In August 2020, Loughlin and her husband pled guilty to paying $500,000 to get Olivia and Bella enrolled at the University of Southern California as crew team recruits, despite neither one ever participating in the sport. The Full House actress was fined and served two months in prison. Giannulli was also fined and sentenced to five months in prison.
Olivia competed on Dancing With the Stars this year, placing eighth overall in the competition. The influencer loved her time on the show, crediting it for instilling a sense of diligence in her: “I really found a drive and a work ethic that I think I’ve had since I was young, but maybe I haven’t been able to execute in the last few years, so it’s been really nice to find that again.”