Despite having strong family ties, Maria Menounos was once estranged from her parents for dating her partner, producer-director Keven Undergaro. But not because he was a bad person or treated her poorly — rather, Menounos’ father didn’t approve because Undergaro is Italian-American.
“It wasn’t an easy situation,” Menounos explained to AOL. “He wasn’t Greek so my dad was very upset, pretty much disowned me, took my education away … I was now pretty much homeless, no education, no degree, but I had Keven.” Undergaro claimed that their relationship at the time was like “Romeo and Juliet without ending in full tragedy.”
Still, as the media starlet told The National Herald in 2014, “I gave my parents their way so much but I wasn’t going to let them tell me who I can fall in love with.” Menounos added, “My dad came around when he saw me on TV and saw that I was achieving my dreams,” while her father noted, “[And] when I saw how much Keven loved her and took care of her.”
While her father eventually apologized to her future husband, Menounos told AOL, “It’s so hard to give the whole story but it was really tragic and really, really hard. We spent so many nights clinging to each other crying and it was terrible.” Thankfully for the family, they seem to be getting along just fine these days.