Just over a decade after Heath Ledger’s sudden death, Michelle Williams is opening up about finding love again.

The very private Oscar-winning actress, 37, sat down with Vanity Fair as their August cover star where she talked about her now husband, indie rocker Phil Elverum.

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“I never gave up on love,” Williams said about Ledger, with whom she had daughter Matilda, 12. “I always say to Matilda, ‘Your dad loved me before anybody thought I was talented, or pretty, or had nice clothes.’ ”

And now, she says she’s as happy as ever, “Obviously I’ve never once in my life talked about a relationship, but Phil isn’t anyone else. And that’s worth something.”

Williams added, “Ultimately the way he loves me is the way I want to live my life on the whole. I work to be free inside of the moment. I parent to let Matilda feel free to be herself, and I am finally loved by someone who makes me feel free.”

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Later Williams explained why she decided to open up about her personal life now, “I don’t really want to talk about any of it,” she says. “But there’s that tease, that lure, that’s like, ‘What if this helps somebody? What if somebody who has always journeyed in this way, who has struggled as much as I struggled, and looked as much as I looked, finds something that helps them?’”

And she shared some advice for people, who,  like her, struggled to find love after loss, “Don’t settle. Don’t settle for something that feels like a prison, or is hard, or hurts you… if it doesn’t feel like love, it’s not love.”

Williams secretly wed Elverum in a private ceremony in the Adirondacks mountains earlier this month.

Read more from Williams here.