updated 04/13/2011 AT 11:00 AM ET
•originally published 04/13/2011 AT 12:30 PM ET
Just days after Catherine Hooper moved in with her fiancé, Andrew Madoff, two years ago, his entire world collapsed.
Andrew is the son of Bernie Madoff, who is serving a life sentence for defrauding hundreds of investors in one of the biggest Ponzi schemes in history. Bernie first confessed his crimes to Andrew and his brother Mark (who committed suicide last December). Traders for the company, the brothers turned their father in to the FBI and have not been charged with any crimes.
However, Hooper’s own professional future was in jeopardy, too, simply for being in love with a Madoff. “I was a retail consultant for the fashion industry,” says Hooper, 38. “So to be in any way connected to scandal was not going to be feasible. I took the bull by the horns and resigned from my main client immediately.”