Ashlee Simpson Maybe Rebounding with Craig Owens…and Other Reasons This Divorce May Get Nasty

The original statement from Ashlee Simpson and Pete Wentz regarding their divorce included the statement “We remain friends and deeply committed and loving parents to our son Bronx, whose happiness and well-being remains our No. 1 priority.”

As it turns out, that “remaining friends” part? Miiiiight not really be happening. Pretty much all of the legal news that’s been pouring out has been nasty. And now? Well, this:

Yeah, that’s Ashlee out with Craig Owens, looking pretty comfy. Craig is, of course, the former lead singer of Chiodos. Who’s now in D.R.U.G.S.

Who, um, are signed to Decaydance.

Which is Pete’s label.


Now, to be fair, this COULD just be two friends out for a stroll. I’ll be the last person to insist that because they are out together and touching that means they are DATING or OFFICIAL or anything. Craig could just be comforting a friend through her divorce. Ashlee could just be hanging out with someone who makes her happy. The cameras might have caught a moment that we are able to read more into. THAT’S what the paparazzi do.

So intead, let’s focus on some facts. Know how I mentioned the legal stuff was messy? I was not kidding. Currently, Ashlee and Pete are butting heads, legally, over:

  • Legal Fees. Pete wants each partner to pay their own legal fees. Ashlee is insisting that Pete pay both his fees and her own.
  • Child Support. Ashlee is asking for child support payments from Pete.
  • Custody. This is where it is likely to get NASTY. Ashlee has asked for joint legal custody, which isn’t a problem, but she also wants FULL physical custody of Bronx, with visitation granted to Pete. Pete has asked for joint custody both legally and physically.

Now, I’m trying to see both sides here and I’m asking you guys to, at least in the case of the custody. Pete’s is kinda easy, he just wants to see his son. But in Ashlee’s case? I don’t want her painted as horrible or mean in this. Because one of the rumors swirling about the split is that Ashlee was concerned with Pete’s seemingly erratic behavior. WHETHER HIS BEHAVIOR WAS OR WASN’T ERRATIC what mattered was that Ashlee THOUGHT it was and she’s doing what she thinks is right to protect her child. And I really don’t think she should be faulted for that.

Same with the money issue: Ashlee had to put her career on hold when she had Bronx. While she had stints on Broadway and a short run on the new “Melrose Place,” she hasn’t been working full time since becoming a mom. It’s possible her bank account took a hit in the meantime.

I guess what I’m trying to say is? OF COURSE we’re kind of infatuated with getting more and more information about this split. It was sudden. It’s two people who seemed to be working out and who were adorable together and obviously love their child. So paying attention is to be expected.

BUT you can pay attention without passing judgment on either party and that’s kind of what I’d like us to do. They’re splitting, it’s hard enough, let’s not vilify either Pete or Ashlee in this situation. Let’s respect they’re going through a very private and upsetting situation in full view of the public eye and leave it at that, please?