Sophia Bush Glamour
Sophia Bush pens a very personal essay for Glamour. Courtesy of Lauren Dukoff

Sophia Bush is best known for her role on One Tree Hill. It was an early-to-mid-aughts staple focusing on the lives of a group of friends in Tree Hill, North Carolina. Now the actress and activist hosts a pair of podcasts: Work in Progress and Drama Queens. Last year Bush made headlines not for being an advocate or her broadcasts, but because she divorced her husband and began a relationship with a woman, Ashlyn Harris. The internet naturally had a field day with this. Now Bush is finally ready to share her truth.

In a powerful personal essay for Glamour Bush touches on the whole media circus, while letting the world know what was really going on behind the scenes. She also bravely breaks down what she was thinking and feeling on her wedding day, her struggle with fertility and how she has finally found happiness. Ahead, are some of the most inspirational highlights from her journey.

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She almost called off her wedding.

"In April of 2022 I was close to calling off my wedding. Instead of running away, I doubled down on being a model wife. 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. Fans and friends were telling me how exciting this milestone was and how happy I looked. I felt nothing. Things hadn't been easy at home, but everyone says marriage is hard, right? As the day wore on, I felt mounting pressure from strangers online waiting for me to post something—what a strange part of public life to have to navigate—so I sat myself down and chose a picture. It was a black-and-white photograph of us running away from the camera. Yes, I see the bittersweet irony now. I wrote a really nice story about the people in that picture. Except it was just that: a story. I typed something about how incredibly happy I was and tried to drown out the familiar voice in my head. Make it look easy. Make it look perfect. If your smile is shiny enough, maybe no one will notice that up close all of your teeth are broken. But sometimes broken is just broken. I hit post. And then I walked into the bathroom and threw up."

She battled infertility.

"I found myself in the depths and heartbreak of the fertility process, which was the most clarifying experience of my life. It feels like society is finally making space for brutally honest conversations about how hard and painful any fertility journey is, but I kept mine private. I was trying to get through months of endless ultrasounds, hormone shots, so many blood draws that I have scar tissue in my veins, and retrieval after retrieval, while simultaneously realizing the person I had chosen to be my partner didn't necessarily speak the same emotional language I did."

She found solace and strength in community.

"During the summer of 2023, I moved back into my empty home in LA. I was separated and preparing to file for divorce, and groups of women in my life started opening up about issues they were going through in their own homes. It seemed like every week there were more of us, including [former US soccer player] Ashlyn [Harris], whom I'd first met in 2019 and who was in the process of figuring out her own split from her wife. She'd been such a kind ear for those of us who opened up about our problems during a shared weekend of speaking engagements at a fancy conference in Cannes, and soon it became clear that she needed our ears too."

She didn't expect to find love.

"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. What I saw was a friend with her big, happy life. And now I know she thought the same thing about me. It really took other people in our safe support bubble pointing out to me how we'd finish each other's sentences or be deeply affected by the same things. When you're so in the trenches of hardship—plus you have the added weight of having to go through it on a public stage—it can be hard to see anything but what's right in front of you."

She feels like she can finally be herself.

"I finally feel like I can breathe. 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. This might sound crazy—but I think other people in trauma recovery will get it—I am taking deep breaths again. I can feel my legs and feet. I can feel my feet in my shoes right now. It makes me want to cry and laugh at the same time."

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