Friends say Simpson was blindsided by Lachey's published account of their bust-up

By People Staff
Updated April 27, 2006 07:35 AM
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Jessica Simpson is said to be “devastated” by a recent tell-all interview that her ex, Nick Lachey, gave to a magazine about their relationship.

In the published interview Lachey said he still loved Jessica, felt “blindsided” and “sucker punched” by her decision to divorce and that she refused to try counseling.

Jessica’s reaction? “She was devastated, heartbroken,” says an insider. “She didn’t think he would do that.”

Friends gathered at Simpson’s house on the day the article came out to console her. And Lachey himself even called to check in. “He wanted her to hear it from him,” says a Lachey friend. “He felt bad that she was upset. (But) Nick didn’t apologize, because the things he said (in the article) only demonstrate that he loves her.”

Simpson sees it differently. “What really upset her was the timing,” says the insider. “Nick waited until two weeks before for his album to debut (Lachey’s CD, What’s Left of Me, will be released May 9] to tell a reporter that he loved Jessica. That’s not cool.” Furthermore, the insider adds, “he keeps saying, ‘I’m sorry I couldn’t make her happy,’ but he is not choosing to say why.”

For her part, Simpson chooses to remain tight-lipped. She was scheduled to be interviewed for a Vanity Fair cover story, but that has since been canceled after it became clear that she would have to talk about the divorce. “She will not take the low road,” says the insider.

Instead she is throwing herself into recording her next album and launching a line of hair extensions. “Financially and businesswise, she’s hotter than she’s ever been,” says the insider.

In fact, money may be a sticking point between the two. Soon after Jessica filed for divorce in December, Nick specified that he reserved the right to ask for spousal support, though the published interview says he denies he will ask for alimony. Another possible sore point, adds the insider: “The family thinks Nick is attacking everybody but himself.”

But his friends beg to differ. “Nick took responsibility for the split more than anyone else,” says a friend.

While Jessica’s father and manager, Joe, is sometimes mentioned as a force behind the breakup, the friend says, “Nick doesn’t blame Joe. It’s no one’s fault. He doesn’t blame Jessica.”

Still, the friend adds, “Nick never wanted this marriage to end. He would never want to hurt her.”