IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

‘My Unorthodox Life’ star Julia Haart says kids were ‘there for her’ during divorce

“As a mom, I’ve been there for my children my whole life. This year, my adult children were there for me," Julia Haart tells TODAY.com.

Julia Haart opened her life up to the world in the first season of “My Unorthodox Life,” which premiered on Netflix in July 2021. The mother of four left an ultra-Orthodox Jewish community in Monsey, N.Y. in 2012, and went on to become the creative director of the lingerie brand La Perla and later the CEO of the modeling agency Elite World Group from 2019 to 2022.

For her four kids, though, her open attitude is nothing new. Speaking to TODAY.com, the reality star shares that her kids, whom she shares with ex-husband Yosef Hendler — Batsheva, Shlomo, Miriam, and Aron — know three things about her approach to parenting: She’s never lied to them, she’ll answer all their questions and she’ll never judge them.

That means all conversations are game. “If they’re going to find out about it, isn’t it better that they find out about it from their parents than from porn?” she tells TODAY.com of the premiere of Season Two of “My Unorthodox Life” on Dec. 2. 

If Season One was the tale of Haart’s status quo in New York with her family — from fashion shows with her daughters to time with billionaire husband Silvio Scaglia — then Season Two watches what happens when everything changes: Both Haart and her eldest daughter Batsheva Haart go through divorces around the same time. The season tracks the fallout

My Unorthodox Life. Julia Haart
Julia Haart tells TODAY.com she doesn't think marriage is "for her."Netflix

After over two years of marriage, Haart filed for divorce from Scaglia, La Perla CEO, in February 2022.  Scaglia, owner of La Perla and Elite World Group, then fired her from her position as CEO in a scene caught by cameras and featured in the show’s second season.  Scaglia also accused Haart of misappropriating funds, which she denies. Scaglia and Haart’s contentious proceedings have already played out in court rooms and are now making their way onto the Netflix show.

In February, Scaglia sued Haart, accusing her of illegally withdrawing $850,000 from a Freedom Holding account, the company that owns Elite World Group, after learning she had been terminated as CEO. Haart, per legal documents, contended that Scaglia could not remove her from her position at EWG because she owned half of the company.

The lawsuit came to an end in May, when a Delaware court ruled in Scaglia’s favor, saying Haart did not have equal ownership of the company with Scaglia, per court documents

In July, Haart filed a complaint, per New York court documents, in July against Scaglia, alleging he defrauded her out of millions. The lawsuit, which accuses Scaglia of “egregious, bullying, unauthorized conduct,” is still ongoing. 

Per Deadline, Lanny Davis, Scaglia’s rep and one of his lawyers, said Haart’s July suit was “similar to claims that she made in a Delaware court” and called this an attempt to “mislead the media.” TODAY has reached out for comment.

Suffice to say, their Season Two exchanges are a far cry from Scaglia’s interactions with her in the last season, when the Italian businessman said things like, “You’re my life. I (would) not be alive without you.” 

In November 2021, Batsheva and her husband Ben Weinstein, whom she married at 19, also split up. 

When Season Two opens, the mother and daughter sit on the bed in pajamas, commiserating over their similar situations. Haart, clad in leopard-print pajamas, puts her head in her hands and says, “I cannot believe we’re both getting divorced at the same time.” She continues, “Now we’re both single ladies.” They seem in awe of their lives’ latest plot line: “I’m trying to find the humor of it all,” Batsheva responds. 

According to Batsheva, the experience brought mother and daughter together, especially after she moved back in with Haart. “She’s just the most supportive woman I know,” Batsheva tells TODAY.com.

Batsheva Haart and Julia Haart
Batsheva Haart says she is "so thankful" for her family's support amid her divorce.Jamie McCarthy / Getty Images

“I’m so thankful for my family because they really supported me in either direction,” Batsheva continues. “When I had gone to my mom and told her she was like, ‘We love Ben so if you want to stay with him or leave him, we support you.’”

Haart says she still speaks to Weinstein, and is thankful her daughter’s divorce was amicable, especially when compared to her own. Haart says her divorce from Scaglia has been “triggering.”

“I left a world where men controlled me and now, I feel I back where I started,’ she says.

Going through simultaneous divorces, Haart says there were times Batsheva — and all her children — acted as a mother to her. She has relied on them, gathering for their daily lunch and frequent meetings 

“As a mom, I’ve been there for my children my whole life. This year, my adult children were there for me,” Haart says. “They hugged me. They held me. They stayed with me. They just showered me with so much love.”

As the new season premieres, Haart says she can’t bring herself to watch it and see some of her most difficult moments play out in moments she says are completely unscripted. 

She says she has no relationship to Scaglia, who recently got engaged. “I’m sure she’s a lovely person and she’s a woman and I want the best for her, and I just hope he’s lovely to her children,” she says. “That’s my only hope.”

Haart is moving on as well, with Season Two tracking her forays into the dating world alongside Batsheva. At 51, Haart is dating regularly for the first time. “My kids have helped me a lot figuring out how to navigate them because obviously they’ve been doing it a lot longer than I have,” Julia says.

For Batsheva, growing up in a sex-positive household has made dating fun. 

“It’s so fun to recap my mom on what’s going on, what was happening and I’m thankful we have that relationship,” Batsheva says. “She made our home and our family a safe environment to be able to share stuff like this.”

Her sister Miriam embarks on a committed relationship with Nathalie Ulander this season after coming out as bisexual in Season Two.

Haart tells TODAY.com that, while she has made friends through the dating process, she hasn’t entered into a relationship. Recent experiences have made her rethink marriage.

“I don’t think marriage is right for me,” she says. “I don’t want to speak to my global community, I still think marriage is beautiful, but for me personally I’d rather someone be with me because they want to, not because they’re legally required to. I don’t want to put a piece of paper on my love.”