Emily Ratajkowski Says She Thinks She Attracts "the Worst Men" — Here's Why

Emily Ratajkowski
Getty: Kristy Sparow | Stringer
Getty: Kristy Sparow | Stringer

Emily Ratajkowski is done appealing to the male gaze. Or at least, has made it a "lifelong project" to rewire the brain to not think about it so much. But, of course, that's easier said than done.

Throughout her career as a model, author, and actor (shout-out to "Gone Girl"), Ratajkowski has tried to embody the idolized "independent woman" that has been placed on a pedestal since the first bra-burning ceremony of the '70s (probably).

"I have always felt like a strong woman," the 31-year-ol says on the Jan. 3 episode of her "High Low With EmRata" podcast. "As you get older, you're financially secure, become your own boss, and you don't need a man . . . You think, OK, I did it." It, being the glorified independence. She adds, "Which is so f*cked up that I'd build my whole life around it" — a whole life around avoiding the "toxic association with femininity and neediness."

Unfortunately, her efforts didn't seem to make much of a difference. "That's what I hate with dating . . . men in particular," says the podcaster. "They're like, 'OK, yes, you're special. You['re independent].' And they love it and love it, and then slowly they get emasculated and . . . don't know what to do with those feelings, and then they resent you."

The model continues: "They start to tear you down, and then you're back to square one. And it's so f*cked up and unfair, because I feel like a lot of men who truly think they want a strong woman actually don't know how to handle it and . . . what it means for their own identity" — specifically those who feel like they have something to prove. "I said to my girlfriend, 'I feel like I attract the worst men,'" she recalls. "Sometimes I'm like, 'F*ck.' Because I want a confident man. I don't want an overly confident man who has something to prove and is trying to prove it through me. That is not what I want."

EmRata finalized her divorce to Sebastian Bear-McClard in September, and recently split from Pete Davidson. While she was with Davidson, an insider told US Weekly, "There's no doubt Pete loves a challenge and he's certainly met his intellectual match in Emily." So perhaps there's hope in BDE after all.

Ratajkowski is joined by TikTok star Olivia Ponton on Tuesday's episode. Ponton shares similar experiences as a model herself. "From such a young age, we are taught to do the absolute most to impress men, and I still fall for it," the 20-year-old says. "I tell myself, 'I'm single, I should go out and wear a cute dress and get boys' attention.' Yet I don't even want their attention! I don't even understand my thought process."

The two also discuss the differences between being in relationships with men and women. Despite both of them being open to dating multiple genders, "male validation is so powerful," EmRata says.

She goes on to applaud Ponton's influence with a TikTok platform of eight million followers. "What you represent is that you can have any kind of sexual orientation and you can look however you want," EmRata says. "That's super important because I think women do get put into boxes. And it can even happen in queer culture." Taking a moment to share the challenges of presenting femme as a queer woman, she says, "You feel like, 'If I'm going to be this way, then I have to present this way, and that's the only way I'll be accepted into a community.' But you're breaking outside of the mold and boxes."

For now, both Ponton and Ratajowski are giving dating "the old college try." Best of luck to them both!