Nikki Bella Told Artem to ‘Suck It Up’ When 'DWTS' Judges Got Tough

Toughen up! Nikki Bella was very honest with fiancé Artem Chigvintsev when he was getting upset about the judges’ low scores on season 29 of Dancing With the Stars.

“I think because Brie [Bella] and I have been athletes our whole life, I have been raised in such a way, like, don’t cry about injuries. Suck it up. So, Artem and I actually got in this discussion,” Nikki, 36, told Us Weekly exclusively while promoting the new season of Total Bellas. “I think he was so shocked because I was like, ‘Why are you taking it so personal?’”

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She went on to explain to Chigvintsev, 38, that the judges are there to give constructive criticism to him and partner Kaitlyn Bristowe — specifically Carrie Ann Inaba.

“He was like, ‘Oh my gosh!’ Then you see what they got this past week,” she added, referring to the pair’s perfect score following their Argentine tango on the Monday, November 9, episode. “I go, ‘She pushes you! You guys did better and look at the outcome.’ I’m like, ‘Carrie Ann’s doing her job!’”

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Nikki admitted that she and her husband-to-be, who welcomed their first son, Matteo, in July, “bumped heads on that.” She also urged the Russia native to make a video after Inaba, 52, revealed on The Talk she was getting “bullied” by fans who thought her scoring was too tough. Ultimately, they decided not to post it.

“We saw things differently, but that’s just the athlete in me,” the Incomparable coauthor said. “Imagine singing in front of Simon Cowell. Like, that’s kind of what you sign up for. … They would give me such a hard time every week. Like, ‘You need to be more graceful.’ And I just sucked it up. I was like, ‘Yeah, you’re probably right, I do.’”

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Brie, 36, also noted that she would love to go on the show — if her husband, Bryan Danielson, would compete as well.

“I think it’d be fun to challenge myself if my husband did it too, and we could kind of compete against each other,” the mother of two told Us.

Total Bellas premieres on E! Thursday, November 12, at 9 p.m. ET.

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