The veteran Two and a Half Men star, who played Charlie Sheen and Jon Cryer's bisexual mum on the hit U.S. sitcom, hit headlines late last year (15) when she revealed she is in a long-term relationship with a woman. The 73-year-old did not name her partner, but admitted there was a big age difference between the pair.

The lucky lady was subsequently identified as Sarah, and they have since gone public with their relationship.

The American Horror Story star, 41, has now opened up about their romance in a candid interview with the New York Times, in which she confesses the couple has actually been together for just over a year.

Sarah, who was previously linked to actress Cherry Jones from 2004 to 2009, can understand why her personal life is of interest to fans, but the sudden tabloid attention has been "surreal".

"My choices in romantic partners have not been conventional, and therefore the idea that it is 'other' makes it compelling," she reasons.

The actress, who has dated men in the past, goes on to claim she is hesitant to label her sexuality, but she has no problem admitting she is in love.

"If my life choices had to be predicated based on what was expected of me from a community on either side, that's going to make me feel really straitjacketed, and I don't want to feel that," she explained. "What I can say absolutely is that I am in love, and that person happens to be Holland Taylor."

And Sarah insists the age gap between herself and Holland isn't so surprising to close friends and family, because she has always found herself attracted those of an older generation.

"I had a complicated home life, and my teachers, predominantly my theatre teachers and my English teachers, were very dedicated to taking care of me in a particular way," she said. "And in doing so, I think I developed a very easy rapport with people older than myself."

"There's a poignancy to being with someone older," she continued. "I think there's a greater appreciation of time and what you have together and what's important, and it can make the little things seem very small. It puts a kind of sharp light mixed with a sort of diffused light on something. I can't say it any other way than there's a poignancy to it, and a heightened sense of time and the value of time."