On this week’s episode of The Real Housewives of New Jersey, the group separates to enjoy some of the spa’s more traditional amenities. Melissa and Teresa struggle to connect. And as Melissa’s birthday getaway comes to a close, a long-awaited showdown ensues.

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It’s Not Over Until It’s Over

The deep introspection continues among the natives of New Jersey in the middle of the Arizona desert. It’s finally the last night of the trip, and the gang is trying to enjoy some much-needed downtime. Not one to hold her tongue, Caroline points out that they’ve all been in a supposedly good place with each other before only to wind up hating each other again. She suggests that if anyone is still holding anything in, now’s the time to say it. We know she’s referring to Melissa and Teresa, the only two who haven’t had any “breakthrough” moments about their relationship, despite the equine therapy, energists and drum circles.

Joe Gorga admits that he still has unresolved suspicions regarding his sister’s role in the infidelity rumors circulating about his marriage. Teresa, once again, swears she isn’t involved, but Joe’s not letting her off the hook just because she denies adding fuel to the fire. He wants her to demonstrate some loyalty and speak up on behalf of her family. Just as things start to really heat up, viewers are magically transported to 12 hours earlier.

Too Much Information

It’s Melissa’s birthday, and Teresa walks in on some weird mating rituals going on between Joe Gorga and Melissa. Teresa presents her sister-in-law with some black lacy panties with a peace symbol on them. Melissa finds the “peace panties” an odd gift but figures Teresa had her brother in mind when buying them.

Melissa is happy to see Jacqueline and Teresa mending their issues. She hopes this means her sister-in-law is finally ready to be more open and honest about the cheating gossip. All Melissa wants is to move on from it. This seems to be the theme of the whole trip.

Now That’s What I Call a Spa

Finally, everybody gets to enjoy more traditional leisure activities. Rich, the two Joes and Chris hang by the pool. Not the type of guys to try and downplay their Jersey machismo,¬† they manage to scare off sunbathers hoping for a few moments of quiet reflection. Joe Gorga tells his brother-in-law he loves him. It’s unclear how much the alcohol is playing into their cease fire, but he appreciates Joe Giudices’ efforts to leave his ego at home.

The Manzos discuss Albert’s startling revelation about the abuse he experienced throughout his childhood. He feels that he was able to take the best aspects of the extreme discipline he endured throughout childhood and dilute it to make a pretty good parenting cocktail when it came to raising his own children. Caroline reflects on how truthful the men have been on the trip, while Melissa and Teresa refuse to do the same. She thinks they are harboring a lot of anger towards each other but would rather hug each other and resume talking behind each other’s backs than confront one another. She thinks neither woman wants to be the one to start an argument.

The girls hit the tennis courts but are told to leave their egos at the gate. Like every other activity at this spa, there is a zen component to the activity. The girls are playing doubles because, according to the tennis instructor, it’s a great way to build relationships. All the tension between Melissa and Teresa is evident when they are on opposing sides of the net.

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Balancing Act

Soon, it’s back to business as the group faces another challenge. Those who are willing pair up and have to walk across two thin wires suspended above the ground. In order to be successful, they have to lean on one another to make it across. Joe partners up with his sister. She struggles with the exercise, and Joe attributes this to the fact that Teresa has a hard time letting her guard down and being vulnerable. He thinks her whole life is a facade. Even though there are things going wrong, she’ll tell everyone things are great. The two successfully complete the obstacle. The same can’t be said when Teresa and Melissa attempt to cross. They crash and burn.

Admit It and Quit It

The group gathers together for dinner to celebrate the birthday girl. Melissa is over all of the therapy and ready to go home. Melissa’s birthday wish is that whoever is behind all the negative tweets, nasty articles and idle gossip to stop trashing her reputation and marriage. She gives a toast during which she gives shout-outs to everyone except her sister-in-law. Whether the snub is intentional or not, Caroline feels it validates her opinion that nothing between Melissa and Teresa got resolved.

Now we are back to where the episode started. Joe tells Teresa he believes she fed people information about him and his wife, but he forgives her anyway. Teresa says she had nothing to do with the situation, and she wants to drop it. Rich chimes in that nothing gets resolved that way. Everybody is content to sit back and let this play out.

Joe says the whole confrontation at the launch party seemed staged to him. Teresa says he shouldn’t doubt her. He is going to accept nothing less than an admission of guilt. Melissa thinks anyone who believes Teresa would ever shoulder any blame is living in La La Land. Joe Giudice comes to his wife’s aid and tells his brother-in-law to just ignore Penny and her malicious intentions. Joe Gorga says if the roles were reversed, Teresa and her husband would never let it go.

Teresa says if Penny was worth straightening out, she would do it. Teresa doesn’t want to give her any further attention. Joe becomes frustrated and throws a glass, prompting Melissa to escort him out of the room and chastise him for losing control.

Caroline intercedes and tries to explain to Teresa that the only way she can prove to her brother that she wasn’t involved is to stand united against the parties who are. Kathy says the family needs to stop listening to outsiders and start listening to each other. Teresa really doesn’t feel this is her mess to clean up, but with the majority of the group strong-arming her, she agrees to help put an end to the haters. Melissa decides to finally let things go and feels content now that they are all on the same side.

The Real Housewives of New Jersey airs Sundays at 8pm on Bravo.

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(Image courtesy of Bravo)

Jennifer Lind-Westbrook

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Jennifer has worked as a freelance writer in the entertainment field since 2012. In addition to currently writing feature articles for Screen Rant, Jennifer has contributed content ranging from recaps to listicles to reviews for BuddyTV, PopMatters, TVRage, TVOvermind, and Tell-Tale TV. Links to some of Jennifer’s reviews can be found on Rotten Tomatoes.