Sophia Bush’s Coming Out Journey in Her Own Words After Ashlyn Romance Debut

Sophia Bush Coming Out Journey in Her Own Words After Ashlyn Romance Debut
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Sophia Bush has candidly discussed how coming out has helped her learn more about herself.

Bush opened up in April 2024 about being part of the LGBTQIA+ community, writing in an essay for Glamour, “As I came into myself, I already felt it was my home. I think I’ve always known that my sexuality exists on a spectrum. Right now, I think the word that best defines it is queer. I can’t say it without smiling, actually. And that feels pretty great.”

The actress also confirmed her romance with soccer star Ashlyn Harris, who filed for divorce from wife Ali Krieger in October 2023. Bush, for her part, made headlines in August 2023 with news oft her split from Grant Hughes. The former couple were married for 13 months before parting ways.

While reflecting on her evolving sexuality, Bush recalled knowing something wasn’t right before she exchanged vows with Hughes.

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“In April of 2022 I was close to calling off my wedding. Instead of running away, I doubled down on being a model wife,” she noted in the Glamour piece. “In 2023 my now ex-husband posted a lovely tribute to our first anniversary on Instagram. When I saw it, I felt the blood drain from my face.”

Bush has since found happiness within the LGBTQIA+ community.

“I was like, ‘Oh, my God, the queer community has been my home and is the home of my whole family since I was old enough to understand,’” she said on the “Work in Progress” podcast in June 2024. “Uncle Tony had a boyfriend and not a girlfriend. I would never want to hurt the people I care the most about who’ve been in this fight for liberation for so long. I’m gonna get out of the way. And then, it was like, ‘Well, maybe I don’t have to get out of the way. Maybe I just get to like who I like.’ What a revolutionary f–king idea.”

Keep scrolling for Bush’s coming out journey in her own words:

Her Coming Out Message

Sophia Bush Coming Out Journey in Her Own Words After Ashlyn Romance Debut
Amanda Edwards/Getty Images

“I sort of hate the notion of having to come out in 2024. But I’m deeply aware that we are having this conversation in a year when we’re seeing the most aggressive attacks on the LGBTQIA+ community in modern history,” she wrote for Glamour in April 2024. “There were more than 500 anti-LGBTQIA+ bills proposed in state legislatures in 2023, so for that reason I want to give the act of coming out the respect and honor it deserves.”

Bush noted that coming out made her feel like she could “finally” breathe, adding, “I don’t think I can explain how profound that is. I feel like I was wearing a weighted vest for who knows how long. I hadn’t realized how heavy it was until I finally just put it down.”

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Sophia Bush isn’t afraid to admit her past romances weren’t all perfect. “My first experience with love was incredibly pure. The boy I loved had been one of my best friends from the time we were 9 years old,” the actress wrote in a personal essay published on Cosmopolitan in 2017. “In my 20s, when […]

Appreciating the Support

After opening up about her decision to live her authentic life, Bush thanked her fans for their outpouring of support, writing via Instagram in April 2024, “Thank you for the kindness, vulnerability, and the stories and journeys of your own so many of you have shared. Courage is contagious. Here’s to a life in progress.”

A Message for Herself

Sophia Bush Coming Out Journey in Her Own Words After Ashlyn Romance Debut
Taylor Hill/FilmMagic

Two months after coming out, Bush attended her first Pride event and shared an empowering message in honor of the milestone moment.

“You are perfect. No matter how long it might take, you’ll find your people,” she wrote via her Instagram Story in June 2024. “And they will help you find more and more of yourself. It’s worth it. You’re worth it.”

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Related: Sophia Bush and Ashlyn Harris’ Relationship Timeline

Sophia Bush and Ashlyn Harris’ friendship turned romantic on the heels of their respective divorces from Grant Hughes and Ali Krieger, and they’ve been quietly building their relationship. A source exclusively told Us Weekly Bush and Harris “bonded over their breakups and having to start over” in October 2023, one month after they began dating. […]

What Her Loved Ones Saw

Sophia Bush Coming Out Journey in Her Own Words After Ashlyn Romance Debut
Antony Jones/Getty Images

Bush didn’t always know about her sexuality — but her friends did notice.

“I think so many women are like, ‘Well, I’m settling a little bit,’” Bush said on an episode of her “Work in Progress” podcast in June 2024. “Everyone says everything’s hard, all my friends hate their husbands. And you sort of go like, ‘Oh.’ Then maybe that’s not it.”

Bush revealed how a loved one approached her after her divorce from Hughes.

“One of my best friends looked at me and was like, ‘I gotta say, that was just painful to watch, and I’m so glad you’re getting out of it,’” she recalled. “‘But, like, I don’t just think he was not the right person for you, but also, I don’t actually think you like men.’ And there was sort of the aha moment.”

According to Bush, she actually once “fell in love with” a “beautiful French exchange student” when she was a teenager. She had conflicting feelings, however, about referring to herself as bisexual in her 20s because some people around her pointed out that she “mostly dated men.”

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