We wouldn’t have married if I hadn’t been pregnant, but we did.” Todd Chrisley’s first wife, Teresa Terry, knew as she walked down the aisle in 1990 that their shotgun wedding — when she was just 19 and he 21 — wasn’t the best idea, but in shocking divorce documents obtained by Star, the Chrisley Knows Best star’s teenage bride admitted that she had no idea the violence and terror that was to come.
By 1994, the high school sweethearts, now parents to Lindsie and Kyle, had devolved into acrimonious spouses thanks to Todd’s iron fist. “He likes to control his environment,” she detailed. “I had two small kids [but at home] everything had to be picture-perfect; your hair always had to be fixed and you had to be dressed to the 10s,” she said. “I grew tired of being constantly corrected.”
She also grew afraid. That year, Terry filed a “prevention of family violence” order against her husband, claiming that two years prior he had “wielded a knife threatening to kill her” and three days after that he allegedly “tore all of her clothes, including her undergarments, from her body and battered her using his closed fist.”
Todd was ordered to stay 1,000 feet away from his wife, and soon Terry filed for divorce, saying she “fears for her life” and asked for a restraining order to keep her estranged ex from “harassing, harming, [or] vilifying,” her or their kids.
Teresa also accused him of cheating on her with his now-wife, Julie, even providing dates and locations of their alleged trysts. In typically fiery fashion, Todd shot back that he “vehemently and categorically denies [treating Teresa] cruelly” and successfully lobbied for joint custody of their kids.
While he’s found fame on reality TV as the self-proclaimed “Patriarch of Perfection,” Teresa warns he’s really a ticking time bomb: “You just cannot imagine how vindictive he can be.”