Italian actress-director Asia Argento, Anthony Bourdain's girlfriend at the time of his suicide in June, has spoken publicly for the first time about the globe-trotting chef and TV culinary host's death.
Looking grief-stricken and speaking haltingly, Argento, who turned 43 on Thursday, told "Daily Mail TV" of the social-media backlash that followed Bourdain's death: "People say I murdered him. People say I killed him. . . . I understand that the world needs to find a reason. I would like to find a reason, too. He was so deeply loved."
Responding to a question about allegations that she had cheated on him, Argento responded, "He had cheated on me, too. It wasn't a problem with us. . . . He was a man who traveled 265 days a year. When we saw each other we took really great pleasure in each other's presence, but we are not children. I cannot think of Anthony as somebody who would do an extreme gesture like this [killing himself] for something like that [infidelity]. What I do feel terrible about is that he had so much pain inside of him and I didn't see it. I did not see it. And for that I will feel guilty for the rest of my life."
Tearfully, she added that anger at his suicide "kept me alive. Because otherwise this desperation has no end. . . . I was angry, yes, for [him] abandoning me and my kids" from two previous relationships, daughters Anna Lou, 17, and Nicola Giovanni, 10. "But now it’s been replaced just by this loss, this hole, that cannot be filled by anything."
She said that two months before his death it had been their two-year anniversary. "And he said, 'Two years. A miracle. A gift. The best thing that has ever happened to me.' And for me, it's the same. And nothing and nobody will ever take that away from me."