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'Teen Mom' Amber Portwood on how things with ex Gary Shirley are now

Amber Portwood
Amber Portwood / Twitter

"Teen Mom" star Amber Portwood's life has gone through a lot of changes in the years since viewers saw her on MTV a few years ago. She made headlines for her drug addiction, explosive anger and physical assaults. Then came her shocking decision to opt out of drug court in exchange for a five-year prison term. She was released last November on good behavior after having served 17 months behind bars.

In an interview with OK! Magazine, posted on Thursday, August 21, Amber explained why she made that decision and how things are now in her life, especially in regards to her relationship with her ex and daughter's father Gary Shirley.

Amber explained that she made the tough decision to go to prison because she knew that another stint in rehab wasn't going to work. She realized that if she didn't do something drastically different, she was just going to end up dead, something that was not an option for her because she wanted to be around for her daughter Leah.

Thankfully, it worked. No longer dependent on prescription painkillers, she's now in school. She hopes to study sociology so that she can one day help people like her.

As for her relationship with Gary, Amber said that "it's good." She said that while they have their problems sometimes and he's still her ex, it's "not drama all the time" like it used to be, filled with screaming and cussing. Most importantly, they don't fight in front of Leah.

Amber also revealed that she won't be battling Gary in court over Leah any time soon. As of now, she's happy with Gary still having primary custody since it works out fine for them. She pointed out that with their good relationship, she can call Gary and ask for Leah at any time.

Viewers will get to see Amber Portwood's new life, along with that of Maci Bookout and Catelynn Lowell, on TV soon. In mid-August, it was announced that "Teen Mom" will be returning for a new season in 2015. The one name missing from the cast is Farrah Abraham. Farrah was apparently cut from the show because the others stars refused to film with her in light of her involvement with the sex industry.