updated 06/15/2009 AT 12:00 PM ET
•originally published 06/15/2009 AT 1:30 PM ET
All you need is love – just ask love-struck actor Bruce Willis.
The tough guy, Die Hard bachelor once vowed to never marry again, but he admits he broke that decade-long promise immediately when he met his current wife, Emma Heming.
“I lasted one date,” Willis, 54, says in the July issue of W magazine. “I went from ‘F— love’ to ‘Love is truly the answer.’”
After separating from Demi Moore in 1998, “I spent the last 10 years single and, for the most part, unhappy. In a dark place. I never thought that being with someone else was the answer,” he says.
“I would say, ‘I’m alone, but I’m not lonely.’ But I was just kidding myself,” he adds. “Then I started hanging around Emma, and on a day-to-day basis my life became much happier.”
Since marrying Heming, 32, in March, Bruce admits, “We’re sickening. We make out in public. I know there’s some rule that you’re not supposed to be doing – what is it? Public displays of affection?”
One of Willis’s favorite things about his bride? Just like Demi’s husband Ashton Kutcher, she gets along great with the kids. Heming says she adores her new role as “a stepmommy” and her “individual relationships with each of the girls.”
“We’ve become like a tribe,” Willis says of his newly integrated family. “It’s generated a lot of interest because everyone can understand resentment and envy in the breakup of a marriage, but they don’t understand how I can get along with my ex like that.
“Demi and I made a choice to put the kids first, and we’re really lucky that it turns out we all have fun together. I still love her, and I have a lot of respect for how she lives her life.”