June 28, 2019 at 1:15 pm PDT | by Mariah Cooper
Gay son from ‘RHONJ’ says dad won’t pay tuition because of his sexuality

Michael Marchese. (Screenshot via YouTube)

Former “Real Housewives of New Jersey” star Amber Marchese’s stepson, James Michael Marchese, is claiming that his father Jim Marchese refuses to pay for his college tuition because he is gay.

The 18-year-old, who goes by the name Michael, has started a GoFundMe to raise money for his college tuition. On the GoFundMe page, Michael says his issues with his father began when his father discovered he was gay in 2018 and kicked him out of the house. Michael and his brother Sebastian, 17, moved in with their mother, Rebecca Grande.

“Since this time, my father has been slowly cutting ties with me until I ‘live according to his standards.’ Essentially, this meant – and still means – that I have to be ‘straight’ and date women while ‘admitting’ that I chose to be gay,” Michael writes. “With this, my father has refused to help in paying for any schooling because he believes I have to live in his home and follow his preferred life-style to be good enough to receive any financial assistance with school.”

Jim told People that Michael’s “entire story is a fraud.” He says the reason he refuses to pay for Michael’s college tuition is because he doesn’t agree with his decision to attend Fairfield University instead of a state school.

“I paid over $40,000 in 2018 for private school and purchased him a Range Rover. I gave his mother over $10,000 to support him and his brother so they had a good home,” Jim told People “Our divorce settlement states we are to match the other parents contribution. I already paid my portion. His mother is refusing to pay anything. Michael wants me pay an additional $275,000 for Fairfield, a s— school for rich kids with average grades. I offered to help if he attended state school. He has not presented me with one financial form on any school.”

Although Jim says Michael’s sexual orientation isn’t the reason he won’t financially support him he still does not agree with his son’s sexuality.

“My son is mentally ill and refuses therapy. [People] should experience life and make a responsible decision about lifestyle in their twenties or thirties after having some perspective on life,” Jim told People.“I compare it to buying a car. Imagine being forced to keep the type of car you wanted at 16 years old for the rest of your life. My guess it would be a very different car at 35 years old. Michael, by labeling himself at 18 years old and making it public, has closed so many doors without the benefit of experience.”

Jim has come under fire in the past for posting homophobic tweets regarding Kevin Hart’s anti-gay jokes which cost him the title of Oscars host.

“So true NO STRAIGHT MALE wants his son to be gay. A gay son is a curse that takes away your #family traditions #heritage #lgtbiq is a parents nightmare that destroys families. Ruins holidays like #Christmas #KevinHart we support you! #LiberalismIsAMentalDisorder,‘” Marchese tweeted in December.

So far, Michael has raised more than $12,000 of his $35,000 goal for tuition money.

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