August 13th, 2012
10:33 AM ET
Jennifer Aniston's love life has been subjected to public scrutiny for years, and her relationship with new fiancé Justin Theroux is no exception.
Speculation about the couple first heated up last May, after they were seen enjoying a group dinner in Los Angeles.
Gossip spread that it was a "romantic dinner date," but Aniston's rep said at the time that the two were just pals - although People magazine noted that they were pals who'd been spending a lot of time together since March of that year.
The press swiftly moved from calling Theroux just a friend to viewing him as Aniston's new beau, especially after she told "Good Morning America" in June 2011 that she was "extremely lucky, and ... extremely happy" with her personal life at the time, as People reports.
Later that summer, celebrity magazines were filled with rumors about Aniston's romance with Theroux, ranging from gossip that they were planning a wedding to speculation that the pair had moved in together.
Earlier this year, Aniston grew more frank about their romance, clearing up chatter that the two started seeing one another while filming "Wanderlust" together.
"Nothing happened on that movie," she told "GMA" in February, according to GossipCop. "We were just friends ... I've known Justin for a long time."
She later added in an interview with InStyle that with age came wisdom about "what qualities are important in love and what suits me ... [a]nd what I won't settle for."
From the sound of it, she's found the qualities she wants in 41-year-old Theroux. She told Marie Claire Australia in its May issue, as excerpted by Just Jared, that Theroux "is a protector for sure. He's just a good human being, and so funny."
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