Ashley Jacobs made her relationship with Mike Appel Instagram official

By Natalie Stone
December 02, 2019 09:06 PM

Ashley Jacobs has officially moved on following her split from Thomas Ravenel.

More than a year after the Southern Charm couple parted ways, Jacobs has found love with boyfriend Mike Appel. On Monday, the Bravo personality introduced her new beau to her Instagram followers, making their relationship social media official.

“Found someone close to my own age!!?” wrote Jacobs, 34, jokingly referring to the multi-decades age difference between herself and Ravenel.

“And our birthday’s are just a day a part! Happy birthday to this cutie♥️,” Jacobs wrote alongside a smiling photo of herself and Appel. “Thanks for making me smile!!”

Jacobs also gave the birthday boy some love on her Instagram Stories, where she called Appel a “stud muffin.”

“You were born, and the world became a better place,” she wrote alongside a blue heart emoji. “Happy birthday you stud muffin!!!”

Appel is the co-founder and chief marketing officer of Related Garments, “a matching themed apparel company that focuses on creating designer undergarments that are coordinated,” according to his LinkedIn account.

Mike Appel
| Credit: Ashley Jacobs Instagram

Her new romance comes months after Jacobs opened up about her past relationship with Ravenel, whom she split from in August 2018 after more than a year together.

In an interview with Entertainment Tonightpublished at the end of July, Jacobs opened up about meeting Ravenel — and what led to their split a year later.

When they met in spring 2017, Jacobs told ET, she was looking for a change.

“I went back a few times to [Charleston, South Carolina to] visit him and I thought, could I make this work?” she explained. “This is a great town, I’m a registered nurse. I can work wherever I want … I know someone who has an in, not into the reality TV show, but has an in into a town where I can kind of sit back and let him take me around, and show me the best places to live, the best places to eat. And, I like this person.”

Jacobs then joined the cast of Southern Charm as Ravenel’s girlfriend and stirred up some major drama, openly feuding with Kathryn Dennis, Ravenel’s ex and the mother of his two kids.

Credit: Paul Cheney/Bravo

“It was dark, and it was really lonely and, yeah, I was really lonely,” Jacobs shared. “I lost a lot of weight. I wasn’t taking care of myself mentally … I suffered from depression, situational depression.”

“I didn’t have the support of my family,” she continued. “They were very disappointed in my decision, and so the only person I had was Thomas. He was my support system, we were really in the trenches together … I stayed by his side because I needed his support, because I wasn’t getting support from anyone else, not even my family.”

In September 2018, Ravenel was arrested and charged with assault and battery in the second degree after a former nanny accused him of rape. After the arrest, it was announced that Ravenel would not return to Southern Charm.

In October, Ravenel and Nanny Dawn, 44, — who asked that she be publicly identified by her first name and occupation for her own privacy — reached a $125,000 settlement, with Ravenel agreeing to pay $45,000 in her personal legal fees and an additional $80,000 to a local nonprofit aiding adult survivors of sexual assault.

In September, Ravenel pled guilty to third-degree assault and battery in the assault case. He received a 30-day sentence that was suspended to a $500 fine and probation in lieu of jail time. Ravenel also recently reached a custody agreement with Dennis over their two young children.

“I mean, if you’re dating someone and there’s allegations [against them], you can imagine just that in itself [takes a toll],” Jacobs told ET. “It concerned everyone that was close to me.”

“That was really difficult,” she added. “That’s not normal. Then you add custody, and then you’re adding children, you’re adding the show, and two people in a relationship just trying, you know? We were still trying to figure it out. It wasn’t meant to be.”

“It left such a bad taste in my mouth, really,” Jacobs said of living in Charleston. “There’s some trauma related to it. As much as I look back at pictures and I think, what a beautiful place, I still can’t help but feel [like] that really sad, lonely, depressed person.”

“I don’t ever wanna go back to that place,” she continued. “Like I said, it was the worst year of my life. I don’t think I could make it any better. I tried. It didn’t work.”