Nikki Bella felt 'pathologically lonely' in her relationship with John Cena: 'I have many regrets'
The couple dated from 2012 to 2018. Bella wrote in her memoir that they 'struggled to align' their very different goals as a couple during the entirety of their relationship
Former wrestler and reality TV star Nikki Bella has penned a memoir called 'Incomparable' in which she has fleshed out all the major details of her 2018 breakup with WWE star John Cena.
Nikki and Cena broke up in April 2018 after a six-year-long relationship spent largely in the spotlight. Bella admittedly wrote in her book that throughout their six-year-long relationship, they "struggled to align" their very different goals as a couple.
Nikki spent a lot of time pushing the issues between them under the carpet and shoving away her demands from the relationship.
"Rather than turn and face that, I pushed it under the carpet and figured I could pretend like it wasn't there. Because I was terrified of losing my love, I stuffed my desire for marriage and kids as deep as I could," she wrote.
"He had made it clear that they (kids) weren't on the menu for him. That's tough, though, because if you're inclined that way, then the more you grow to love someone, the more you want it all," continued Nikki.
She wrote that she had "stopped giving voice" to her maternal needs, admitting that she was "worried that my ex would call it off and let me go," Nikki wrote even though she "wanted him more" than a baby and marriage.
There is also mention about her undergoing surgery for a herniated disc and how John was always by her side while she was in recovery. "He curled up into the fetal position. He wouldn't let anyone send him home. He helped me go to the bathroom, even though it made me want to die with embarrassment," Nikki recalled.
She described her struggles with "basking in love" without putting any efforts into "working for affection". She wrote that she "couldn't stand to feel so needy" and was "terrified" to be "dependent" on Cena, even though taking care of her "seemed to make him so happy."
Looking back, Nikki, whose real name is Stephanie Nicole Garcia-Colace, said, "I have many regrets about that relationship."
She listed her primary regret as not knowing herself better before she got into the relationship. "I wish I'd understood how the patterns in my life and my relationship with my own father, informed how I react to love, boundaries and feelings of abandonment."
"I think I could have averted some of what happened. Because my dad left when I was 15, I learned how to fill in the holes. I expect to be left behind and to find a way to not confront or acknowledge those feelings of loneliness and abandonment," she continued.
Bella also wrote that her "intent" was to fit "into contours of [John's] very busy and big life. That was paramount to me, pleasing and keeping him content, not voicing my own needs. He had no idea I wasn’t getting what I needed because I never said anything".
She added that their busy schedules also left her feeling "pathologically lonely". She admitted that she was "affected" by the rumors that her breakup with Cena was purely a ploy for ratings for her show 'Total Bellas'.
"The fallout was terrible, particularly the speculation within the news media and on social media that it was all for ratings. The thing about reality TV is that you don’t get to pick and choose what you show — and the pressure from filming inherently creates drama."
"It brings things to a head by applying a heavy load to the sensitive parts of your life. Having our relationship fall apart on national TV was excruciating. I had to relive it all again, while also having my heart broken from missing my ex," she wrote.
However just months after their split, she participated in 'Dancing With The Stars', met professional dancer Artem Chigvintsev and the two began dating after a while. Not only did Nikki find love on the show, but she also finally felt "independent" and she "liked how it felt to be that independent girl."
"I had been sitting in a jail cell without realizing that the door wasn’t locked and that I had built it myself. After 'Dancing With The Stars', I felt like I’d found myself. I didn’t want to lose her again."
"[What] 'Dancing With The Stars' also unlocked for me was the idea that I can stand on my own. I think it's partly growing up as a twin and then becoming a star based on that twindom, but being involved with a mega-star also undermined some of my faith in myself."
Nikki and Artem are now expecting their first child together. 'Incomparable' is on the stands now.