On Wednesday, Little Women actress Florence Pugh took to Instagram to defend the age gap with her actor boyfriend Zach Braff. 

Fans have criticized the couple publicly on social media because Pugh is 24 and Braff is 45. On April 6, Pugh posted a photo of Braff on his birthday which received a lot of hate comments. 

“On Monday, I posted a photo in honor of Zach’s birthday and I wrote a birthday message underneath. Within about eight minutes of the photo being posted, I had about 70 percent of the comments hurling abuse and being horrid– basically bullying someone on my page,” she said.

“It is the first time in my entire Instagram life that I’ve had to turn off the comments on my page. I’ve never been an Instagram page that encourages that. I’ve never been an Instagram page that likes that toxic vibe.” 

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“It makes me upset that during this time when we need to be together, the world is aching and the world is dying, and a few of you decided to bully for no reason,” she stated.

“I am 24 years old. I do not need you to tell me who I should and should not love, and I would never in my life tell anyone who they can and cannot love. It is not your place. The abuse that you throw at him is abuse that you are throwing at me, and I don’t want those followers. I do not want to have to be protecting my comments everytime I post a picture of him. I really hope that I can continue this relationship with a lot of you.”