Sophia Bush is opening up about her relationship with Ashlyn Harris for the first time. Six months after the women were first romantically linked, the actress penned an essay for Glamour about ending her marriage to Grant Hughes and finding love with her female friend.

In the piece, Sophia, 41, said she connected with Ashlyn, 38, while preparing to file for divorce after less than one year of marriage in 2023. “Groups of women in my life started opening up about issues they were going through in their own homes,” she recalled. “It seemed like every week there were more of us, including Ashlyn, whom I’d first met in 2019 and who was in the process of figuring out her own split from her wife [Ali Krieger].”

The One Tree Hill alum said that this community of women helped uplift each other while they were all dealing with individual problems. “I didn’t expect to find love in this support system,” she admitted. “I don’t know how else to say it other than: I didn’t see it until I saw it. And I think it’s very easy not to see something that’s been in front of your face for a long time when you’d never looked at it as an option and you had never been looked at as an option.”

Sophia acknowledged that both she and Ashlyn saw each other as friends with “big, happy [lives]” before going through this period together. After some nudging from loved ones, the ladies realized that they were “finishing each other’s sentences [and] deeply affected by the same things,” according to Sophia.

When they finally hung out away from the rest of their friends, the couple spent more than four hours together and Sophia described it as “one of the most surreal experiences” of her life. “In hindsight, maybe it all had to happen slowly and then suddenly all at once,” she explained. “Maybe it was all fated. Maybe it really is a version of invisible string theory. I don’t really know. But I do know that for that sparkly moment I felt like maybe the universe had been conspiring for me.”

However, she also wrote about the public scrutiny that she and Ashlyn have been under ever since reports of their relationship first surfaced in October 2023. “The online rumor mill began to spit in the ugliest ways,” she shared. “There were blatant lies. Violent threats. There were accusations of being a homewrecker. The ones who said I’d left my ex because I suddenly realized I wanted to be with women – my partners have known what I’m into for as long as I have (so that’s not it, y’all, sorry!).

The John Tucker Must Die actress insisted that she did not end her marriage because of a “hysterical rendezvous” and went on to praise her girlfriend for how she’s handled the situation.

“I am absolutely in awe of her relentless integrity,” Sophia gushed. “The way she prioritizes and centers her kids, not only in her life but in the core of her being, is breathtaking to behold. Falling in love with her has sutured some of my own childhood wounds, and made me so much closer to my own mother. Seeing Ashlyn choose to not simply survive, but thrive, for her babies has been the most beautiful thing I’ve ever witnessed a friend do. And now I get to love her. How lucky am I?”