(NEW YORK) — Rielle Hunter and John Edwards have ended their controversial affair after she released a tell-all memoir that contained negative comments about his marraige Elizabeth Edwards, who is now deceased after losing her battle to cancer.
Hunter said today that one reason they split up was because she was “no longer interested in hiding.” The former mistress dropped her bombshell during an interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos on Good Morning America.
“We are a family, but as of the end of last week John Edwards and I are no longer a couple. Not at all,” she said. When asked if she still loved Edwards, Hunter replied, “I do.”
Stephanopoulos asked if Edwards still loved her and she said, “You have to ask him. I think he does. I mean I feel that he does.”
The interview began with Stephanopoulos asking Hunter, who gave birth to a girl named Frances Quinn with Edwards, whether knowing what she knows now, would she do it all again.
“Would I do that again?” repeats Hunter almost incredulously. “No way. Absolutely not.”
Hunter’s announcement came out the same day her revealing memoir What Really Happened: John Edwards, Our Daughter and Me was released.
The book revealed that Edwards had several mistresses before her, but it also angered people for her harsh criticism of Edwards’ wife Elizabeth, who was dying of cancer at the time of their affair. Elizabeth Edwards has since died of the disease.
Hours after the GMA appearance Hunter sat down with the five female hosts on the ABC talk show The View where she insisted: “I’m a mom, I’m not a mistress,” and “I’m not a big believer in infidelity.”
Her comments got a very pointed reception on the show. Host Whoopi Goldberg asked Hunter how she could “trash a dead lady,” referring to Elizabeth Edwards.
Hunter describes Elizabeth Edwards in her book as “crazy,” and a “venomous” “witch on wheels” who is given to fits of “rage.”
“I wrote the book to tell the truth,” Hunter replied. “What I was told about their marriage along the way, my experience of that – I was truthful about.”
Hunter was also asked if she didn’t believe in infidelity how she could approach the former senator when they first met with, “You are so hot.”
“I didn’t feel that was a come-on,” Hunter said, adding that the comment “just flew out of my mouth.” Hunter said the couple has been worn down by the scrutiny and pressure brought on by their high profile affair that began while Edwards was running for the 2008 presidential nomination.
“For me, for my part in it, it’s because I’m no longer interested in hiding, hiding our relationship,” she said. “I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but we’ve had a lot of media scrutiny. It’s complicated and it’s hard. It wears you down after a while.”
Hunter, 48, wouldn’t say whether one of them made the break.
“That’s private. We decided together to end it. It’s hard. It’s painful,” she said.
She rejected a suggestion that the relationship may have been a mistake.
“I know many things in the relationship were a mistake but I don’t regret loving him,” she said.
Hunter said that people should read the book before criticizing her.
“There is so much misinformation and distortion about this story and people form opinions without knowing what really happened,” she said.
“The public persona of John Edwards and Elizabeth Edwards — and me, for that matter — are so wrong. I think that it helps that we all are real humans and we all are not perfect,” she said. “I don’t think it serves the kids, including my own daughter, to have people that their father is a demon, when he’s not, and that Elizabeth was a saint, because she wasn’t, and that I’m a homewrecker. It doesn’t serve anybody.”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Elise Labott, Kevin Liptak and Patrick Oppmann, CNN
Gregory Krieg, CNN
Ray Sanchez, CNN
Ivana Kottasova, CNN