Paulina Porizkova left it all on the table on the latest episode of Red Table Talk where she discussed her marriage and divorce from Ric Ocasek.
The entire 38-minute chat can be viewed below, and it’s well worth the watch. Porizkova touches on meeting Ocasek when she was just 19 years old during the filming of the video for “Drive” and falling madly in love with The Cars singer/guitarist. However, there was a big problem: Ocasek was married.
Porizkova says, “He told me that after a couple of weeks had gone by when we had, you know, already made out, and I was, like, passionately in love with this guy, and then he sort of came up with a, like, ‘Oh, yeah, and by the way, I’m married.’ I was like, ‘What?'”
She continued, “I just thought, ‘Okay, so they’ll divorce, and, you know, I’ll leave my boyfriend, and he’ll leave his wife, and that’s good.’ And then so I left my boyfriend, and then I was waiting for him to leave his wife, and then a few months in, ‘Oh, yeah, there’s children involved.’ That one was a little harder to take…I was in too deep at that point. I was madly in love with him, and when he said that he needed time because there were two small children involved, I went, ‘He’s such a good dad.’ And it never really dawned on me that he had all the lies that had started as soon as we met.”
Porizkova went public with her separation from Ocasek shortly after The Cars were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Ocasek was the only band member who didn’t thank his wife during his acceptance speech. Even though they were separated, Porizkova and Ocasek still lived together in New York City.
Before his sudden death in 2019, Ocasek underwent surgery to treat stage 0 lung cancer. While he recovered, Porizkova took care of Ocasek and was the one who found him dead. She recalled coming home after a night out celebrating a friend’s birthday. When she came home, Porizkova brought home some fresh cookies. She offered Ocasek one, but he declined saying he was feeling tired and was going to go to bed.
“The next morning, it was like, you know, 9:00, 10:00. He still wasn’t up, but he tended to sleep late. Rock star hours,” explains Porizkova.
“And so by 11:00, I was like, ‘Mm, he’s sleeping in a little bit too long, so I’m gonna make him a cup of coffee, and I’m gonna bring it up to him. Like, maybe he’s not feeling so great.’ And I brought him the cup of coffee, and he just looked like he was sleeping, so I set the coffee down next to him, and that’s when I saw his face, when I saw his eyes. And they didn’t look like eyes anymore.”
She continued, “And it all kind of started going through my head. I was like, ‘Oh, I can’t move. Oh, I think I’m gonna pass–oh, no, my legs are giving out. Okay, and I’m just gonna, hmm, fall onto the floor here. Well, this is interesting.’ And that coupled with this, like, panic of, like, ‘Oh, my God, oh, my God, oh, my God, oh, my God.’ And then I think my only thought was, ‘I have to get to my children. I have to get to my boys.’ And it was kind of lucky that they were both at home. And I couldn’t walk. I crawled downstairs on my elbows, like, three flights of stairs on my elbows ’cause I couldn’t use my legs. Just the damnedest things…And then my boys–I think witnessing my–witnessing the pain of my children was probably some of the worst things that has ever happened to me.”
Follow his death, Porizkova learned Ocasek wrote her out of his will citing she “abandoned” him. Due to being cut out of his will, Porizkova didn’t have any liquid assets and relied on friends to buy her groceries.
Porizkova succinctly said of that time, “There were so many things that sucked at that point.”
Porizkova’s appearance on Red Table Talk is part of her promotional tour of her new book No Filter: The Good, the Bad, and the Beautiful. In the book, she details her experiences with aging, as well as her personal ups and downs in life and in love.