Courtney Stodden and Doug Hutchison have received plenty criticism for their headline-making marriage – he was 51 and she was 16 when they first wed – but the “Couples Therapy” stars insist their love is genuine and will stand the test of time, even when pressed about their controversial relationship.
The pair spoke about how their love blossomed on Monday’s Access Hollywood Live, revealing that they began their courtship online.
“We didn’t meet [right away], I think it was six months, over the course of six months, we were talking online, we were communicating through text messages,” Courtney told Billy Bush and Kit Hoover.
“You met online?” Billy asked.
“Yeah,” Courtney and Doug both answered in unison.
“Through mutual friends,” Courtney explained.
“Doug, people are going to call you a pedophile and pervert for meeting a young girl online,” Billy said.
“I didn’t meet Courtney online,” the actor – best known for his roles on “Lost” and “The Green Mile” – said, seemingly contradicting what he had just told Billy and Kit.
“And they’re not that far off, I mean, you meet a young girl, start chatting with her online… you’re an actor, ‘Green Mile,’ you got [a] career here in town, I’m surprised that you would do that,” Billy continued.
“You know what, you can throw down–” Doug interjected.
“You just threw your career away, by the way, haven’t you? Right?” Billy pressed.
Despite the critics and naysayers, the actor wouldn’t change anything about his choice to marry Courtney at such a young age.
“I would do it again, over and over and over because I fell in love with the woman I’m supposed to be with for the rest of my life,” he told Billy and Kit. “We live day by day, Billy. We don’t know if tomorrow is going to come. So you have to grab it when you fall in love.”
Also appearing with Courtney and Doug was “Couples Therapy’s” Dr. Jenn Berman, who vouched for the couple.
“This is not a fake marriage,” she told Billy Bush and Kit Hoover. “The biggest myth about their relationship is that it is a publicity scam.”
The couple explained that they were not intimate until the night of their honeymoon and that Courtney’s mom monitored all of their interactions as they got to know each other.
“Life is unpredictable and you need to live every day to the fullest. Courtney and I fell in love… We’re soul mates and so we needed to dive [in],” the actor said when asked why he married her at 16 and did not wait until she was 18.
According to Courtney, she would have never fallen for someone her own age.
“The connection was so organic… When you’re an old soul, you’re not going to fall in love with a 14-year-old boy. You meet somebody, you know what you want and you’re gonna get that… I knew what I wanted,” she explained. “I was a Christian girl and I wanted to save myself until I got married… that meant so much to me that I found the love of my life… We’ve been married for a year and a half almost.”
Check out Courtney and Doug as they work through their relationship issues on “Couples Therapy,” Wednesdays at 10 PM on VH1.
-- Jesse Spero