Dina came from a professional upper-class society of Genoa City. Joanna Manning, Neil Fenmore, Stuart Brooks, Katherine Shepard, Gary Reynolds, Phillip Chancellor II, John Abbott and Dina were quite close friends who had been to the same high school through their earlier years and developed that friendship beyond those years. Dina married John, who was the Wealthy Jabot Cosmetics founder. Dina and Katherine Chancellor were very good friends in those days.
Their son Jack was firstborn, and a few years later Ashley was born. John asked Katherine to be Ashley's godmother, and Katherine gave Ashley the middle name of Suzanne as a tribute to a deceased former close friend of theirs in high school because she was "such a beauty." Then youngest daughter Traci was born. By the time they were adolescents, John was left alone to raise his three children when Dina ran off with another man to Paris. The Abbott children were mostly raised by long-time family maid, Mamie Johnson, whom they thought of as their mother. Jack, the oldest, served in Viet Nam, then with an MBA from Harvard, returned to run Jabot with Ashley who graduated with a chemistry degree from the University of Colorado. Traci graduated from Genoa City University, then attended graduate school at Stanford, and became a best-selling novelist living in New York City. They remained a close family, as everyone got into each other's business, and came to John for advice.
In 1983, when John refused an offer to buy out Jabot and found son Jack had okayed the deal, he had a heart attack and underwent surgery to alleviate arterial blockage. With this health setback, he began to have second thoughts - that maybe it was time to sell Jabot. But he nearly had another attack upon discovering the prospective buyer was ex-wife Dina, owner of Mergeron Enterprises, due to the death of her second husband. Needless to say, John declined. Dina was also at Jack's side that year while he recovered after being shot by his first wife, Patty. Ashley began seeing Eric Garrison, who unknown to Ashley was also involved with her mother Dina. Eventually, Eric ended his affair with Dina and proposed to Ashley, and Dina offered to help with the wedding plans. When Eric's possessions arrived from Paris, Dina made sure that Ashley saw a portrait of her mother that Eric had painted. On the back was an inscription, 'All my love, Eric.' Ashley was mortified to discover that Dina and Eric were lovers. Ashley stopped seeing Eric, then fell for Marc Mergeron, who turned out to be her mother's stepson! But Ashley eventually broke it off with Marc because he was too domineering.
In 1984, John was married to Jill Foster, but after he discovered her one-night stand with his own son Jack, he got back together with Dina again. Then former Country Club tennis pro Brent Davis returned to town and began an affair with Dina's friend Katherine Chancellor. When he found out he was dying he wanted to reveal to Ashley that he had been Dina's lover and was Ashley's real father! Dina and Kay tried to talk him out of it, but Ashley was traumatized by the news when he told her, and ended up with no memory at a roadside diner where she took the name "Annie" and worked as a waitress. When Brent and Kay returned from a vacation together, Dina confronted Brent about what he had done. Dina shot Brent but missed and Kay was shot instead. Jack figured out what had happened, and he and his lover, Jill, confronted Dina. Dina and John began a search for Ashley. A truck driver saw one of their flyers, figured out who "Annie" really was and offered her whereabouts to John for ransom. Victor Newman ended up finding her at the diner, and took her home to recuperate with him and Nikki at the ranch. Ashley forgave her real father just before his death, and vowed that John Abbott would never find out. Only Dina, Jack, Jill, Katherine, and Victor know the secret of Ashley's real parentage to this day, and John never found out before his death.
1991 Dina returned to Genoa City to attend her daughter Traci's second wedding to Brad Carlton and quickly became romantically involved again with John, which enraged Jill who was trying to get him to marry her again. When John proposed remarriage to Dina, Jill hired Paul Williams to investigate Dina's background. Paul uncovered information about Dina's various affairs occurring while she claimed she was recovering from tuberculosis in a sanitarium. Jill presented the damaging file to John, who immediately canceled his wedding to Dina. She left town shortly afterward. Then Jill found herself competing with Leanna Love for John's romantic interest.
In 1996, Dina reappeared in Genoa City. John resumed his romance with Dina and again proposed. Although Jack was elated that his parents were involved again, Ashley and Traci, who was visiting from New York, both opposed the reconciliation. The stress that John suffered while dealing with Jill caused him to have a stroke. However, he quickly recovered. Jill and John finally agreed to divorce, and Jill made plans to live in a new home with her son, Billy. Dina surprised her family by suddenly leaving town again.
John Abbott died in 2006. Dina sent flowers and her regrets that she was unable to attend.
In November 2008, Dina returned to Genoa City from her home in Paris to attend the funeral of Katherine Chancellor (who was not really dead, it was her doppelganger, Marge). Dina's daughter Traci attended as well, and they exchanged some barbs about Dina's lack of contact with Traci's daughter, (Dina's granddaughter), Colleen.