Teen who married actor 34 years older than her says: I'm happy

File Photo: Courtney Stodden with her husband, Hollywood actor Doug Hutchison.

She has been making headlines worldwide - not only for her itsy bitsy fashion choices but also for marrying a man more than 30 years her senior.

Courtney Stodden was just 16 when she got married in a small ceremony in Las Vegas in May 2011 and she needed her mother's okay back then.

Actor Doug Hutchison was then 50 - just four years older than Stodden's father. The 34-year age gap shocked many.

Hutchison, known for his work in the movie Green Mile and TV series Lost, received death threats that labelled him a paedophile.

His agent dropped him and his family disowned him. But these setbacks did not deter the couple. Stodden says: "I'm happy. That's all that matters to me at the end of the day. As long as we aren't hurting ourselves or anyone else, I say live your life and follow your heart regardless of the opinions."

The couple's courtship had started online. Hutchison was teaching acting classes in Los Angeles and Stodden was taking these lessons online from her home in Tacoma, Washington.

Hutchison did not realise that Stodden was a teenager when they started communicating. He had assumed from her photographs that she was in her mid-20s.

When he found out her age, he told her mother, Mrs Krista Stodden, that he would stay away if she disapproved, but she didn't.

Stodden says: "My parents monitored our online correspondence. When they met Doug and got to know him better, they knew that he was a great person and that they could trust him with their daughter."

Mrs Stodden, who is also her daughter's manager, says: "Courtney is an old soul. She is different in many ways from other girls her age and I knew from the start that Doug was the perfect man for her."

He was always a "perfect gentleman" during their five-month long courtship, she adds.

Mrs Stodden is aware of the negative statements, some of which imply that she has failed as a mother.

"I have two older daughters who are married to men the same age as them. So I'm not in the business of having my girls marry older men," she says. "This was just a very unusual situation and I'm not suggesting it for everyone."

Like her daughter, she insists that public opinion is not going to bother her as "Doug and Courtney are doing very well together".

"What is important to me is that my daughter is with the man whom she loves and that she is healthy and happy."

So has the wide age gap ever been a problem for Stodden? "Never," she says.

"I'm 18 going on 25 and Doug's 53 going on 30. I guess we meet somewhere in the middle and it works out for us. I'm attracted to maturity in men."

Before Doug, she had been in a relationship with a man four years older than she was. That relationship lasted almost three years.

She says: "Of course, I don't usually date 53-year-olds. Doug is an exception."

Despite the generation gap, the couple have common interests such as sharing the same favourite TV shows like The Honeymooners, I Love Lucy and Leave It To Beaver.

They also work together. Hutchison recently produced Stodden's music video for the song Reality. In the video, Stodden prances around in a skimpy costume in a bid to get the attention of a young, good-looking guy.

So was Hutchison jealous?

She says: "There were no tensions regarding the other guy at all because Doug's an actor and he understands that it was just that - acting. I enjoyed collaborating with him."

The couple enjoy dining out, hosting parties, taking vacations and spending time with their puppy, Dourtney - a portmanteau of Doug and Courtney.

Aren't they in a hurry to start a family due to Hutchison's age?

Stodden says: "Neither of us are at that point in our lives where we want to have kids."

Well, her attitude might change, as it did towards plastic surgery.

Rumours of her curvy figure being the works of plastic surgery have plagued her since she became a public figure two years ago. Stodden repeatedly refuted these rumours, claiming that she was "100 per cent surgery-free".

But last month, she went for breast augmentation surgery.

She admits that she already had sizeable C-cup breasts before the surgery. But she had been creating the illusion with Victoria's Secret bras that she was a DD.

"I got tired of faking it and decided to go ahead and get the real deal," she says.

But Hutchison was not too fond of the idea. She says: "He felt like I was perfect just the way I was. But after more discussions, he understood where I was coming from and supported my decision."

It has been weeks since the surgery and judging by the number of sexy photos of herself in bikinis, she is clearly happy with the result.

"I feel much more confident about myself now. I feel and look great wearing all my clothes now," says Stodden. "I appreciate my figure. Why not show it off?"

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