'The Real Housewives of Potomac' star announced the pair's separation in April 2022 after eight years of marriage — and now, she tells PEOPLE that the exes "don't really have a relationship at all"
Ashley, 35, announced the pair's separation in April 2022 after eight years of marriage. But The Real Housewives of Potomac star — who shares sons Dean, 4, and Dylan, 2, with Michael, 64 — exclusively tells PEOPLE the exes still haven't filed for divorce.
"I don't know what this is. As I mentioned, I did this meditation retreat, and one of the things that I meditated on was what is my issue? What is it? So I've decided I'm going to talk to my lawyer and really try to get it going," Ashley said while at BravoCon 2023. "I've just been a little bit complacent about it, if I'm honest, because there are benefits to being married."
"Emotionally, there's none. I think he's moved on, I've moved on, but I don't know. There's just some sort of emotional underlying attachment," she admits. "There are some benefits professionally and financially that he and I have. It's not big, but there are reasons that it's beneficial for us to be married. But [the] reality is we just have to pull the plug and just do it."
In the meantime, Ashley says they're "still navigating" co-parenting of their two children post-split, though she believes "parallel parenting" is the more accurate term for their dynamic.
"I think that's probably a more adequate approximation of where I am. We're not divorced yet, so as we're still navigating that," she explains. "I want to say that we're on better terms than we are, but unfortunately we're just not. That's the way the cookie's crumbling."
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The Bravolebrity adds, "So we're parallel parenting and thankfully, both of us are very involved in the children's life. They don't see any difference. All they know is that they have two houses and they get to have double the toys. So that's been good, but we really don't really have a relationship at all."
As she announced their split last year, Ashley told Bravo's The Daily Dish: "People will be quick to assume that the causes were too much intrusion by reality TV into the most personal parts of our lives, age gap issues, cultural problems, or child-rearing differences."
"Pieces of all these may have affected our pure love for each other, but no one reason is the root cause of our mutual decision to go our separate ways," she concluded. "We are now both at very different stages in our lives and have different goals for our futures. We both want the other to achieve true happiness and fulfillment and feel that we cannot do this together."
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