Kelly Bensimon

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Kelly Bensimon is relieved.

The Real Housewives of New York City star finally gets to put an ongoing legal battle with an ex-boyfriend behind her.

A judge adjourned the assault case brought against her in March by former beau Nick Stefanov. The misdemeanor charges will be dismissed and her record cleared if Bensimon stays out of trouble for the next six to 12 months.

In an exclusive interview, Bensimon opens up to me about the ordeal...and the lessons learned.

Bensimon admits there was a physical altercation between her and Stefanov March 3. She was arrested March 5.

"The thing that I didn't do, which I should have done, is call my doorman. Or I should have called the police," Bensimon says. "I should have said, 'You know, I can't handle this.'…I regret not putting the situation into the hands of someone who could handle it."

Bensimon claims the incident occurred in her apartment after she tried to permanently end the on-again, off-again relationship. "I felt threatened," she says.

The judge also ordered Bensimon to serve two days of community service, which she plans to do with a domestic violence group and a children's cancer organization.

If there's any silver lining in all this, Bensimon said it gave her another reason to help educate her two young daughters about a very serious issue.

"I've always made a concerted effort to empower my kids and to give them enough information to teach them that they are amazing girls," she said. "They understand that no one can touch their bodies and no one can harm them or hurt them."

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