Emily Ratajkowski and comedian Eric André are dating…and ready to bare it all publicly. The two went on a pre-Valentine’s Day date in one of New York City’s most visible venues, Madison Square Garden, to watch a New York Knicks game last night.
But perhaps more strikingly, André kicked off Valentine’s Day by posting a photo featuring both of them naked. He poses nude on the couch while Ratajkowski appears in the mirror. She did not repost the image on her own Instagram, although she did share video of André at the Knicks game with Diplo on her Instagram Story, and tagged them both.
Ratajkowski spoke on her podcast High Low at the end of January about the strange experience of dating publicly following her divorce last fall. The paparazzi attention is difficult, she said.
“It feels pretty weird to be watched,” she started, via Entertainment Tonight. “I’ve said this before on the podcast, but this is basically my first time being single since I was 14, so a.k.a. ever, and definitely as an adult. When I was in my 20s, I was kind of too afraid of the world and afraid of men, to really date. I remember going on a couple of dates like at 20, and in between relationships for brief, kind of moments, and feeling super uncomfortable, and not having fun with it, and so, this has been kind of my first opportunity to date and it’s been really a great experience.”
Her dates’ reactions to being photographed by paps with her have also created issues. “I’ve gone on dates where there’s been no pictures, and I’m like, ‘All good,’ and then there’s been times where literally the first time that I’ve met someone, we spent 2 hours together, and there’s pictures on the Internet,” she said. “My close friends will be like, ‘Dude, that guy’s stoked, like, he’s stoked. He just got photographed on a date with you.’ And then that makes me feel gross, I’m like, ‘I wouldn’t want to be with somebody who is excited to be photographed with me,’ that’s not a good sign.”
“It’s also been tough because I’ve been trying to casually date and not get booed up, not get cuffed up, and it’s been hard to do that and be kind of mindful of the people that I’m seeing because I don’t necessarily want to know when they’re going on another date,” she said. “It’s been really hard, because basically, any time I go on another date, everybody knows, so the other guys I’m dating see it, and it has been kind of difficult, because of course they’re like, ‘Oh, didn’t talk to her last night,’ and then you know, there’s pictures of me out to dinner with someone else.“
“It sucks, and it really makes it hard also, to get to know someone without those kinds of things,” she continued. “They know exactly where I’m at even with things that I don’t necessarily want to share, and they don’t necessarily want to know. So, that’s been a whole other aspect of just trying to keep things casual and also be cognizant of people’s feelings, and that’s been kind of tricky to navigate.”
Senior News and Strategy Editor
Alyssa Bailey is the senior news and strategy editor at ELLE.com, where she oversees coverage of celebrities and royals (particularly Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton). She previously held positions at InStyle and Cosmopolitan. When she’s not working, she loves running around Central Park, making people take #ootd pics of her, and exploring New York City.