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The Girl Next Door

Katie Holmes Is 'Very Supportive' of Boyfriend Emilio Vitolo Jr., Says Source: 'They Are Having Fun'

"They have had time to really get to know each other," a source tells PEOPLE of Katie Holmes and Emilio Vitolo Jr., who were first linked in early September

By Maria Pasquini

Katie Holmes and Emilio Vitolo Jr. are enjoying their time together.

“They are having fun,” a source tells PEOPLE of the couple, who acknowledged their relationship publicly for the first time on Friday, as the chef, 33, wished the actress a happy 42nd birthday.

“Emilio has had a lot of stress this year because of the shutdowns that have affected the restaurant business. Katie is very supportive. Their relationship is cheering him up,” the source adds.

Despite the difficulties of the past year, having more time for one another has been a positive for the pair.

“Since Katie is not working, they have had time to really get to know each other,” the source says. “Emilio thinks their relationship will continue to be strong in the new year. When things return to a more normal and Katie is working again, they will figure it out. For now, they enjoy all their time together in New York City."

The couple’s affection for another was on full display on Friday, when Vitolo shared a sweet black-and-white photo of them for Holmes' birthday.

"The most amazing, kindest, beautiful person. Every time I see your face it makes me smile,” he wrote alongside the photo, in which Holmes sat on his lap while showing a big smile.

“Happy Birthday!!! I love you!!" he added.

The couple was first linked in early September when they were spotted on a date at his family restaurant Emilio’s Ballato. Since then, they have regularly been spotted walking around New York City and packing on the PDA.

A source previously told PEOPLE that Holmes and Vitolo have been speaking almost nonstop.

"Emilio is very charming, flirty. It’s easy to see how Katie fell for him," the source said. "She seems very into him. She keeps texting Emilio all day long and he loves it."

Holmes was previously married to Tom Cruise and they share 14-year-old daughter Suri Cruise. The actress was also linked to Jamie Foxx for several years before they split in 2019.