Sophia Bush's friend helped her to come to terms with her sexuality

Sophia Bush's friend helped her come to terms with her sexuality.

The former 'One Tree Hill' star revealed in April that she identifies as queer and is dating Ashlyn Harris and she revealed that a close friend helped her understand that she was not into men, following her split from ex-husband Grant Hughes in August 2023.

Speaking on her 'Work in Progress' podcast, Sophia explained: "I think so many women are like, ‘Well, I’m settling a little bit'. Everyone says everything’s hard, all my friends hate their husbands. And you sort of go like, ‘Oh.’ Then maybe that’s not it.

“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'. 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."

Sophia insisted she has always felt like part of the "queer community" and she is relieved that she can just "get to like who I like".

She said: "Then 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'. 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 idea.”

Sophia, 41, previously discussed her new relationship in an emotional essay for America's Glamour magazine earlier this year, in which she told how she fell for Ashlyn while the ex-US Women’s International Soccer Team plater was dealing with her split from her fellow footballer wife, Ali Krieger.

Sophia said: “I didn’t expect to find love in this support system. 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 added things soon “turned ugly” as the pair started to face allegations they had been unfaithful to their partners – which Ashlyn has strongly denied.

She said: “The idea that I left my marriage based on some hysterical rendezvous – that, to be crystal-clear, never happened – rather than having taken over a year to do the most soul crushing work of my life?

“Rather than seeing I had to be the most vulnerable I’ve ever been, on a public stage, despite being terrified to my core?”

Sophia and Ashlyn’s relationship was first reported in October 2023, two months after the actress filed for divorce from Grant.

They made their first public appearance as a couple in March at Sir Elton John’s annual Oscars party.