Michele, who's been consistent with her touching tributes to her lost onscreen and off-screen beau at every occasion, has gotten pretty serious with her boyfriend Matthew Paetz -- whom she began dating about a year after her late love's death.
And while she's completely happy with the relationship -- she credits him with being "very respectful for the person [she] was with" and even says she knows "Cory would love him too" -- she finds a disturbing trend lurking within the comments section every time she posts a picture of them together.
Nevermind the fact that she probably just shouldn't pay attention to the comments section of anything ever anyway -- Lea kinda wants her followers to get on board with her new life chapter. Or at least not badger her with depressing reminders of the past every time she tries to smile.
"I love my fans. They're incredible and they were really a part of my whole story and my whole journey with me, so I do come from a place of understanding, but it's also really hard," she said during her discussion on the Fempire Podcast (via People) Tuesday (Jan. 5).
"I really don't talk so much about my story -- mainly because people are always trying to bring me back, so I don't talk often about this personal stuff," she explained of the public's intimate relationship with her personal tragedy. "I love my fans, and they're incredible, and they were really a part of my whole story and my whole journey with me. So, I do come from a place of understanding, but it's also really hard."
"Every time I post a picture, then it's just a landslide of comments that talk about my past and bring that back up, rather than projecting positivity. And even though -- I don't think anyone is projecting hate; it is positive, it's nothing so, so terrible. But at the end of the day, we have to remember that what we put out there, it manifests and it creates energy."
The good news is that Matt, for one, is completely understanding about everything.
The 30-year-old model, whom Michele began dating after they'd worked together on her "On My Way" music video last April, is a fellow in this "really tough" industry of show business, and according to her it takes a very special bond to make it through all of the trials that have come their way so far.
"The only way to really get through is to create a solid unit, and that's really what we've been since day one. We've stood by each other through anything that was thrown our way," she said. "And he's such a great man that he would never really let anything like that ever crack our lovely little core that we created."
Lea, who has said before that Paetz came at just the right time for her to consider herself "whole" again enough to even think about moving on, also tends to keep her personal life a little closer to the chest nowadays, so she knows people might just not know Matthew the way that she does.
"Other people don't know him, and they don't know my private life, so I understand people are going to say whatever it is that they're going to say, but as long as he and I are good, my family's good, my friends are good, and we're happy, that's really all that matters."