Teen Mom OG star Gary Shirley stood up for his ex and baby mama Amber Portwood in a heartfelt testimony amid her custody battle for her son James.
Gary and Amber’s tumultuous relationship played out for Teen Mom OG viewers over the years, who witnessed Amber’s struggles with mental illness, drug abuse, and domestic violence.
The former couple, who shares their 13-year-old daughter Leah, has made great strides since their younger days. Amber has been working on getting herself healthy and improving her relationship with Leah.
Although things are going well on that side of Amber’s family, her messy custody battle over her 3-year-old son James, whom she shares with her ex Andrew Glennon, continues to play on.
Gary Shirley testifies in Amber Portwood’s custody case over son James
During an emotional March 3 testimony, Gary came to Amber’s defense in the custody case. He painted her in a good light, noting the improvements she has made in her personal life.
Gary recalled Amber’s time in prison during the testimony obtained by The Sun. “Amber is a different person now than she was with me, and she is a different person than she was even a year and a half ago,” Gary told the judge of his ex.
“I do notice more positive things. Actually, I am very proud of her. It’s a great responsibility that she has,” Gary continued. “It’s a different bond with James than she had with Leah,” he added.
Gary noted that Amber’s struggles with mental health, drugs, and the law prevented her from being a good mother to their daughter Leah.
Gary says Teen Mom OG star is ‘not the person she was then’
“Because when Leah was that age, she was in prison and some other things going on with her, and I think that the person she is today is not the person she was then,” Gary added. “I think that was a little hard for Leah. That was a hard thing for Leah, seeing how well they get along.”
Amber served 17 months in prison for drug-related charges and was released when Leah was four years old.
Gary continued his testimony, claiming that Amber parents James much differently than she did Leah, noting that Amber has never lost her temper with her son.
“I’ve never seen her do anything to James that would concern me. There’s nothing but love there,” Gary said.
Gary’s testimony comes on the heels of Amber’s ex Andrew requesting to move to California with James and limit Amber’s visitations with him. Also, Andrew allegedly offered meet-and-greets to fans if they donated $10K towards his GoFundMe project.
Teen Mom OG is currently on hiatus.