Millionaire real estate mogul Todd Chrisley and his family have become big-time reality stars thanks to Chrisley Knows Best. Airing on the USA Network since 2014, the show follows the lavish lifestyle and daily drama of family patriarch Todd, his wife Julie, their five children, and their granddaughter, Chloe. But two of those kids—Kyle and Lindsie—are not the biological children of Julie Chrisley. Their mom is Teresa Terry, Todd’s first wife. Here’s the lowdown on Todd Chrisley’s former spouse.
Teresa Terry Was Todd Chrisley’s First Wife
Because the family on Chrisley Knows Best is so well-known—and Todd and Julie Chrisley have been married more for than 20 years—many people don’t realize that Todd has an ex-wife. Born and raised in South Carolina, Teresa Terry was Todd Chrisley’s high school sweetheart. The couple tied the knot when they were very young— just 19 and 21 years old, respectively.
Teresa Terry And Todd Chrisley Had Two Kids Together
According to Terry, she and Todd had a shotgun wedding. “Most likely we wouldn’t have married if I hadn’t been pregnant,” she told the Daily Mail in 2014. “But we did, and it was a big deal. There were six attendants on both sides, and even though the town where we lived wasn’t big, the church was full.”
Teresa gave birth to the couple’s first child, Lindsie Chrisley, in 1989. Two years later, Kyle Chrisley was born. Teresa says she and Todd got along well at first.
“It was all very southern, very laid back, eating meals with family that sort of thing,” she explained to the Daily Mail. “Todd and I would go to the movies, hang out. He was never one for big crowds. He always belonged somewhere else.”
At the time, Terry enjoyed being married to a budding entrepreneur. “[Todd] liked real estate, that’s where he made all his money, and that’s what he did from the beginning,” she explained. “He’d find houses, some of the ones he found dogs live in better places. He’d fix them up and make them amazing, and then it was onto the next house.”
Teresa Terry Has Made Disturbing Claims About Todd Chrisley
However, a few years into marriage, Terry said Todd’s obsessive, controlling nature started to get out of control. “The house always had to be perfect,” she told the Daily Mail. “That drove me nuts. I had two small kids, and there could be no toys out, everything had to be picture perfect like a show-room. He had a mind-set that everything had a place and everything had to be in place at all times. He applied that to people as well.”
As an example, Terry added: “I like to put on a ball cap, put my hair in a ponytail and go out. But with him, your hair always had to be fixed, and you had to be dressed to the tens. I grew tired of being constantly corrected, and I would run my mouth.”
The couple separated and reunited several times over the course of their marriage. But by November of 1994, Terry had had enough. She moved out of the house and filed a domestic violence complaint against her husband, accusing him of repeated abuse. Terry cited incidents where he battered her while she was driving and threatened to kill her with a knife. In another instance, she said Todd tore off her clothes and beat her with his fist.
Terry also filed a criminal complaint against Todd for unlawful abduction because he refused to let her take Lindsie with her when she moved out of the house with Kyle. “It was hard, but I did get her back,” Terry says. “She was gone about two months. She’s old enough to remember.”
Todd denied all of Teresa Terry’s allegations, and the two went to court to fight for full custody of Lindsie and Kyle. By the time the divorce was finalized in 1996, Teresa had dropped her charges against her ex-husband. The pair were awarded joint physical and legal custody of the kids.
She Doesn’t Regret Being Married To Todd Chrisley
One month after his divorce from Terry was finalized, Todd married Julie Chrisley. Terry also remarried not long after the divorce. Clearly, these two were just not meant to be—and Terry says she’s glad she hasn’t had to put up with her ex-husband’s controlling behavior all of these years.
“I don’t know what happened to Todd, really. I’ve known him a very long time, and I know that he’s not all bad,” she said. “There’s good in him. He can be very witty and fun company, but if he doesn’t get what he wants, you’d better believe there will be consequences.’
But despite the heartache and turmoil, Terry says she wouldn’t change the past if she could. “It’s been a wild ride I’ll tell you that,” she told Daily Mail. “But I don’t regret marrying Todd because I sure don’t regret my children.”