EXCLUSIVE: Lea Michele says Cory Monteith would've loved her boyfriend Matthew Paetz

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Lea Michele Opens Up About  New Boyfriend: Cory Monteith Would Love Him


Lea Michele thinks Cory Monteith would be happy for her and her new relationship.

When Monteith died in July 2013, Michele, his Glee co-star and longtime girlfriend, was devastated by the loss. Two and a half years later, Michele has found love again with boyfriend Matt Paetz -- and she believes Monteith would be happy for her.

Speaking withFempire podcast hosts Becca Tobin, Keltie Knight and Jac Vanek, the 29-year-old actress and singer gushed about her 30-year-old boyfriend and the strong base of support their relationship provides.

NEWS: Meet Lea Michele's New Boyfriend Matthew Paetz

"At the end of the day, this industry is really tough, and the only way to get through is to create a solid unit, and that's really what we've been since day one," Michele shared. "We've stood by each other through anything that was thrown our way. [Matt] is a such a great man that he would never really let anything like that ever crack our lovely little core that we've created."



Aside from their strong bond that protects them against the pressures of Hollywood, Michele also praised her boyfriend for respecting her prior relationship with Montieth.

"He is very respectful towards the person that I was with, and that, again, is something I love so much about him," Michele said, adding, "I really know that Cory would love him too."

Look back at the relationship between Michele and Montieth:

27 PHOTOS
Lea Michele and Cory Monteith
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EXCLUSIVE: Lea Michele says Cory Monteith would've loved her boyfriend Matthew Paetz
Actress Lea Michele, right, and actor Cory Monteith arrive at the 12th Annual Chrysalis Butterfly Ball on Saturday, June 8, 2013 in Los Angeles. (Photo by Dan Steinberg/Invision/AP)
Lea Michele and Cory Monteith arrive at the 19th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on Sunday Jan. 27, 2013. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
From left, Chord Overstreet, NeNe Leakes, Lea Michele and Cory Monteith attend The Paley Center for Media presentation of their Inaugural PaleyFest Icon Award to Ryan Murphy, hosted by Samsung Galaxy at The Paley Center for Media on Wednesday, February 27, 2013 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Kevin Parry/Invision/APImages)
Cory Monteith and Lea Michele attend the 2012 Do Something awards on Sunday, Aug. 19, 2012 in Santa Monica, Calif. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
FILE - In this Jan. 27, 2013 file photo, Cory Monteith, left, and Lea Michele arrive at the 19th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. Lea Michele is breaking her silence online after her “Glee” co-star and real-life boyfriend Cory Monteith died of an overdose earlier this month. The actress posted a photo of her and Monteith on Twitter Monday along with a message thanking her followers for “helping me through this time with your enormous love & support.” Monteith was found dead in Vancouver, British Columbia, on July 13. An autopsy revealed the 31-year-old actor died of an overdose of heroin and alcohol. He and Michele played an on-again/off-again couple in the popular Fox series and were an off-screen couple for about a year. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP, File)
Lea Michele and Cory Monteith take a break between scenes while shooting the television show “Glee” in Central Park in New York, Tuesday, April 26, 2011. (AP Photo/Charles Sykes)
Cory Monteith and Lea Michele attend the 2012 Do Something awards on Sunday, Aug. 19, 2012 in Santa Monica, Calif. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
Cory Monteith, right, and Lea Michele present Dylan Sprouse with the favorite TV actor award at Nickelodeon's 23rd Annual Kids' Choice Awards on Saturday, March 27, 2010, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)
Lea Michele, right, and Cory Monteith present the Favorite TV Actor award at Nickelodeon's 23rd Annual Kids' Choice Awards on Saturday, March 27, 2010, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)
Actor Cory Monteith, left, and actress Lea Michele arrive at the Elton John Oscar Party in West Hollywood, Calif. on Sunday, March 7, 2010. (AP Photo/Dan Steinberg)
Cory Monteith, left, and Lea Michele, cast members in "Glee," pose together at the television show's second season premiere in Los Angeles, Monday, Sept. 7, 2010. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
Lea Michele, bottom left, a cast member in the new series "Glee," answers a question as fellow cast members Cory Monteith, bottom right, Jessalyn Gilsig, top left, and Jenna Ushkowitz look on at the FOX Television Critics Association summer press tour in Pasadena, Calif., Thursday, Aug. 6, 2009. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 08: Actors Cory Monteith (L) and Lea Michele attend the 12th Annual Chrysalis Butterfly Ball on June 8, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images for Chrysalis)
SANTA MONICA, CA - AUGUST 19: (L-R) Actors Lea Michele and Cory Monteith attend the 2012 Do Something Awards at Barker Hangar on August 19, 2012 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for VH1)
SANTA MONICA, CA - AUGUST 19: (L-R) Actors Cory Monteith and Lea Michele arrive at the 2012 Do Something Awards at Barker Hangar on August 19, 2012 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for VH1)
PARIS, FRANCE - JULY 01: Cory Monteith and Lea Michele arrive at the Versace Haute-Couture show as part of Paris Fashion Week Fall / Winter 2012/13 at the Ritz hotel on July 1, 2012 in Paris, France. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 11: Actors Lea Michele with the award for 'Favorite TV Comedy Actress' and Cory Monteith attend the 2012 People's Choice Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on January 11, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for PCA)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 09: Actors Cory Monteith and Lea Michele and writer/director/producer Ryan Murphy inside the 11th Annual Chrysalis Butterfly Ball sponsored by Audi, Grey Goose, Kayne Anderson and smartwater on June 9th, 2012 (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images For Chrysalis)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 09: Actors Lea Michele and Cory Monteith inside the 11th Annual Chrysalis Butterfly Ball sponsored by Audi, Grey Goose, Kayne Anderson and smartwater on June 9th, 2012 (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images For Chrysalis)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - JANUARY 15: Actors Lea Michele and Cory Monteith arrive at 13th Annual Warner Bros. And InStyle Golden Globe Awards After Party at The Beverly Hilton hotel on January 15, 2012 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD - SEPTEMBER 07: Actors Cory Monteith (L) and Lea Michele attend the premiere of 20th Century Fox's 'Glee' Season 2 held at Paramount Studios on September 7, 2010 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
UNIVERSAL CITY, CA - MAY 20: Actors/singers Cory Monteith (L) and Lea Michele of Fox TV's 'Glee' perform at The Gibson Amphitheater on May 20, 2010 in Universal City, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
CHICAGO - AUGUST 21: Cory Monteith and Lea Michele of FOX TV's show 'Glee' attend a meet-and-greet at Orland Square, Orland Park on August 21, 2009 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Barry Brecheisen/Getty Images for Fox)
NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 03: Actors Lea Michele (L) and Cory Monteith attend the cast of 'Glee' Signing copies of 'Glee: The Music Vol. 1' at Borders Books & Music, Columbus Circle on November 3, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Joe Kohen/Getty Images for Columbia Records)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 28: Actors/singers Lea Michele (L) and Cory Monteith perform at Glee Live! at the Staples Center on May 28, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
SANTA MONICA, CA - MAY 11: Actress Lea Michele (L) and actor Cory Monteith speak at a Q&A session at the GLEE premiere event screening at Santa Monica High School on May 11, 2009 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Fox)
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MORE: Lea Michele Reveals How She 'Miraculously' Found Love After Cory Monteith's Death

Michele also brushed off critics and haters who have speculated and commented on the nature of her relationship with Paetz, explaining, "They don't know my private life, so I understand that people are going to say whatever they are going to say [but] as long and he and I are good, my family's good, my friends are good, that's all that matters."

Despite the strong bond and support, the Scream Queens star admitted that she still doesn't really feel like she's "made it."

"I have a sort of anxiety all the time," Michele shared. "But I think that's good because that's what helps me keep that drive."

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It's that drive that encourages her to reach for her dreams -- dreams like becoming friends with Chrissy Teigen and John Legend.

"I really would love to be best friends with Chrissy Teigen. I feel like she would cook for me, she would defend bullies for me," Michele said. "I would go to their house and John Legend would be singing or naked in a shower somewhere... I feel like me and Matt would be really good friends with them."

Check out Lea's full Fempire Podcast interview to hear more on her experiences in Hollywood, and what she considers to be one of the biggest moments of her career.

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