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Kelly Clarkson was well aware of the theories surrounding her single status in the late 2000s. She felt judged, even though she knew most of the theories -- especially the one about her being gay -- were just wrong.

"I'm from a small town in the South," she said recently. "Everyone thought I was gay 'cause I wasn't married with kids already! And I was like, 'That's kind of insulting to the gay community!' But, especially in this day and age, I had a very high bar."

Of course, Kelly ended up marrying music manager Brandon Blackstock in October 2013 after nearly two years of dating.

"I think the biggest thing is just getting married later in life. … You change so much in your twenties," she said. "I mean, [my husband] got married at 21 in his first marriage, and they both went, 'What?' It can be very hard to grow in the same way. Your twenties are all about growth and giant [mistakes]."

Kelly and Brandon now have two young children together — daughter River Rose, 2, and son Remington, 6 months.

If she got married younger, Kelly isn't so sure that she still would be married. But, she believes that her marriage is strong because she wed at 31 years old.

"I have an awesome life, and I can hold this down on my own," she said. "I learned that from my mother. She depended a lot, financially, on a man. I don't depend on him, and he doesn't depend on me. We made our own way in our own right, and I think that's what really helps too."

She also loves the way her husband fathers their children. In fact, he inspired her song "Piece By Piece."

Before their second child was born, Kelly got emotional when speaking to Ryan Seacrest about Brandon and her absentee father, saying, "Watching my husband love on his daughter all the time, you know, go to her events and just be there and, like, be present is, like, hard to watch but beautiful to watch. But it's awesome because I know that my kids are going to have that."

She added, "I cannot imagine not seeing this kid to his or her full potential and just seeing what she's going to do, what she's going to be like."