Jennifer Aniston is writing her own narrative.

Throughout her career, Aniston has been a tabloid target, subject to the gossip du jour. But in July, she did something out of character: she finally addressed the "business of lies" in an op-ed for The Huffington Post titled "For the Record." At the time, the 47-year-old Friends star wrote, "If I am some kind of symbol to some people out there, then clearly I am an example of the lens through which we, as a society, view our mothers, daughters, sisters, wives, female friends and colleagues. The objectification and scrutiny we put women through is absurd and disturbing."

Jennifer Aniston, Marie Claire

Michelangelo di Battista/Marie Claire

Aniston explains why she raised her voice in Marie Claire's December 2016 issue (on stands Nov. 15). "My marital status has been shamed; my divorce status was shamed; my lack of a mate had been shamed; my nipples have been shamed," she says. "It's like, 'Why are we only looking at women through this particular lens of picking us apart? Why are we listening to it?'"

After three decades in showbiz, she'd finally had enough. "I just thought, 'I have worked too hard in this life and this career to be whittled down to a sad, childless human,'" Aniston said.

Jennifer Aniston, Marie Claire

Michelangelo di Battista/Marie Claire

Today, Aniston is happier than she's ever been, thanks in part to husband Justin Theroux.

"Why is he the right person for me? All I know is that I feel completely seen, and adored, in no matter what state. There's no part of me that I don't feel comfortable showing, exposing. And it brings forth the best part of myself, because I care about him so much," the Office Christmas Party star gushes. "And he's such a good person. It hurts me to think of anything hurting him.

Jennifer Aniston, Marie Claire

Michelangelo di Battista/Marie Claire

As such, marriage is Aniston's No. 1 priority. In fact, she's turned down roles just to be closer to Theroux—and he's done the same for her. "You have to be so madly in love with it and think, 'I will be so upset if I don't go and play this person,'" Aniston says, adding, "It has to be worth it."

So, what does the actress' future look like? "This is a time when I'm not completely sure what I'm doing. I'm at this sort of crossroads trying to figure out what inspires me deep in my core," she tells Marie Claire. "What used to make me tick is not necessarily making me tick anymore. The most challenging thing right now is trying to find what it is that makes my heart sing."

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