April 17, 2012 at 8:59 AM ET
Divorce is tough; public divorce -- the kind actors Jennie Garth and Peter Facinelli are dealing with -- can be even tougher.
Garth is undergoing her personal upheaval while promoting her new CMT reality show, "A Little Bit Country," and she admits it's not something she's happy discussing.
"That is probably the hardest part about (the split) actually, the timing of everything," she told TODAY's Savannah Guthrie Tuesday, clearly holding back emotion. "When I started to take this show on, I wasn't headed down this road. ... It happened in the middle of filming the show, and now part of my job as an actress is following through and doing press ... and people want to talk about it. I am OK talking about it, but it's not something you really want to talk about."
The show, she insists, had nothing to do with their separation: "The show was something the girls (Garth and Facinelli have three daughters) and I wanted to do, to keep us busy creatively. ... The two really did not go together at all."
That said, she shot down some of the internet rumors that cropped up unrelated to filming -- including one that claimed Garth was jealous of Facinelli's rising star (with "Twilight" and "Nurse Jackie"). "There was nothing like that going on," she said crisply. "I was very happy for him and so happy to be at home with the kids and enjoying my 'early retirement.' I didn't want to work at that time, I just wanted to be at home on the farm."
Just how that farm life works out -- including the scene where her assistant loses a bet and has to suck on a cow udder -- is what "A Little Bit Country" is all about. But there's one thing Garth remains unsure about: Just how many animals they currently have on that farm.
"A lot," she said with a grin reminiscent of her "Beverly Hills, 90210" days. "I'm like an animal hoarder at this point."
"Jennie Garth: A Little Bit Country" premieres on CMT on Friday, April 20.
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