Why Teresa Giudice says she would go back to prison ‘20 times more’ (Exclusive)

For Teresa Giudice, going to prison wasn’t the worst experience of her life.

The Real Housewives of New Jersey star says the death of her mom, Antonia Gorga, earlier this year -- at the age of 66 -- was the toughest thing she’s ever been through. That loss is heavily chronicled in her latest book, Standing Strong, out now.

“I lost my mom [and] that got me really upset and angry,” Giudice tells ET. “That's what made me open up, because I feel like I lost out, those 11 and a half months that I was in prison, you know, [spending time with] my mom.”

“I could've been with my mom those 11 and a half months,” she reiterates. “I got really angry and I expressed myself, and I guess all those feelings came out, which I have to say was really therapeutic.”

“I feel like it was good to get it all out,” she adds. “I guess it was something that needed to come out ... it was one of the worst times in my life. I would go away 20 more times than, you know, not to lose my mom.”

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LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 24: Teresa Giudice attends her book signing for 'Standing Strong' at Barnes & Noble at The Grove on October 24, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Gabriel Olsen/Getty Images)
WATCH WHAT HAPPENS LIVE WITH ANDY COHEN -- Pictured: Teresa Giudice -- (Photo by: Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 03: Television personalities Dolores Catania, Siggy Flicker and Teresa Giudice visit 'Extra' at H&M Times Square on October 3, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by J. Kempin/Getty Images for Extra)
THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY -- Season:8 -- Pictured: Teresa Giudice -- (Photo by: Rodolfo Martinez/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
EAST HANOVER, NJ - MAY 18: Teresa Giudice attends the Gorga's Homemade Pasta & Pizza Grand Opening on May 18, 2017 in East Hanover, New Jersey. (Photo by Paul Zimmerman/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 15: TV personality Teresa Giudice attend the Rookie USA Fashion Show during New York Fashion Week at Skylight Clarkson Sq on February 15, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for Haddad)
TOWACO, NJ - JANUARY 13: RHONJ Teresa Giudice Poses For A Portrait At Her Home on January 13, 2017 in Towaco, New Jersey. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 07: Melissa Gorga and Teresa Giudice attend the Hetrick-Martin Institute's 30th Annual Emery Awards: Help Me Imagine at Cipriani Wall Street on December 7, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
BROOKLYN, NY - NOVEMBER 09: (L-R) Audriana Giudice, Milania Giudice, Gabriella Giudice, and Teresa Giudice attend BKLYN Rocks presented by City Point, Kids Foot Locker, and Haddad Brands at City Point on November 9, 2016 in Brooklyn, New York. (Photo by Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for City Point)
BROOKLYN, NY - NOVEMBER 09: TV Personality Teresa Giudice attends BKLYN Rocks presented by City Point, Kids Foot Locker, and Haddad Brands at City Point on November 9, 2016 in Brooklyn, New York. (Photo by Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for City Point)
POMPANO BEACH, FL - NOVEMBER 04: Teresa Giudice hosts Inance Grand Opening Party on November 4, 2016 in Pompano Beach, Florida. (Photo by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images)
WATCH WHAT HAPPENS LIVE -- Pictured: Teresa Giudice -- (Photo by: Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
MONTCLAIR, NJ - OCTOBER 27: Teresa Giudice arrives at the Fresco Da Franco Halloween Ball at Fresco Restaurant on October 27, 2016 in Montclair, New Jersey. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
UNCASVILLE, CT - OCTOBER 15: Melissa Gorga and Teresa Giudice walk the red carpet before the Ballroom After Party with Chrissy Teigen and LL Cool J for Mohegan Sun�s 20th Anniversary at Mohegan Sun on October 15, 2016 in Uncasville, Connecticut. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Mohegan Sun)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 25: Teresa Giudice attends the Star's Scene Stealers event at Kola House on October 25, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by CJ Rivera/Getty Images)
THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW JERSEY -- 'Reunion' -- Pictured: (l-r) Melissa Gorga, Teresa Giudice -- (Photo by: Heidi Gutman/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
WATCH WHAT HAPPENS LIVE -- Pictured: Teresa Giudice -- (Photo by: Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
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Teresa Giudice’s ‘Standing Strong’: 7 Revelations From Her New Memoir

Earlier this month, Giudice and her family celebrated her mom’s first birthday since her death. Giudice admits it was another tough day, for everyone.

“I'm still numb over it,” she shares. “I still feel like it's not real. Like, I was just in London and as soon as I got there, matter of fact -- as soon I as landed in L.A. -- I dialed my mom's number. So, I feel like it's still not real to me.”

“The day of her birthday, that morning I got woken up and I heard this animal in my room, with this, like, screeching sound,” Giudice recalls. “I'm not kidding, I thought there was some kind of animal in my room. I put the flashlight on, you know, on my iPhone and I was trying to see what it was. I think it was my mom, like the first time I feel like she came to me ... I do feel like that was my mom that day.”

Giudice says she, her brother and their dad visited her mom’s gravesite on her birthday for a private celebration.

“My father brought her favorite muffin, with a candle,” she shares. “He blew it out. It was just a very emotional, stressful day ... It was a hard day.”

'RHONJ' Star Teresa Giudice Thanks Fans For Support After Mother's Death: 'She'll Be Deeply Missed'

Giudice’s father, Giacinto Gorga, moved in with her and her four daughters after her mother’s death.

“He's doing OK,” Giudice says. “I keep him busy with the girls. He is really sad and misses my mom tremendously, you know … I mean, they were married 47 years. He knows her since she's 13.”

Giudice says this season of The Real Housewives of New Jersey, airing Wednesdays on Bravo, has been one of the toughest to watch, because it kicked off with her mother’s funeral.

“I still haven't had the chance to enjoy the show, just because it's been one thing after the other,” she laments. “And I have to say this season, if it wasn't for the other girls, like, they helped me get through it, 'cause otherwise I think I would've just crumbled after losing my mom. They helped me get through it, and they kept my mind busy.”

‘RHONJ’ Star Dolores Catania Consulted Cops to Learn How to Handle Danielle Staub (Exclusive)

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