Kate Upton felt used and objectified by Sports Illustrated cover.

Kate Upton felt used and objectified by Sports Illustrated cover.

Kate Upton became a household name after she appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated in 2012, but they were not the names she wanted to hear. She says she felt “objectified and ridiculed” and was treated like a dumb blonde. Apparently, she’s anything but.

The 21-year-old model, who has since moved from swimsuits to high-fashion with shoots in Vogue magazine, said she felt “terrible about myself for a whole month.”

“Every single guy I met was either married or about to be married, and I felt like I was their bachelor present or something,” she tells Elle magazine in a new interview for their Sept. issue.

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“I’m not a toy, I’m a human. I’m not here to be used. I am a grown woman, and you need to figure your sh-t out,” she said.

Kate Upton All Curves in Elle
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Kate Upton Felt Used, Objectified by Sports Illustrated (photos) 1Kate Upton Felt Used, Objectified by Sports Illustrated (photos) 2Kate Upton Felt Used, Objectified by Sports Illustrated (photos) 3

“People deal with models like they are children. They think they can pull one over on you. It’s actually funny,” she said. “I’m always like, ‘I’m about to pull something on you, and you’re so focused on thinking I’m dumb you’re not even going to know.'”

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Upton, who grew up in Florida and is an accomplished equestrian, shot to fame after a YouTube video went viral of her dancing the Dougie during a break in an LA Clippers basketball game.

She was named “Rookie of the Year,” in her first appearance in the magazine’s swimsuit issue in 2011 and landed the cover last year and this year. She drew some criticism because of her curvaceous body and was attacked by a pro-anorexia website.

Upton says she’s gotten the dumb blonde treatment even during professional events and photo shoots.

Kate Upton, Oh La, La! So French, So American in Elle (photos!)

“I was at a photo shoot and I was wearing a cross necklace that my mom bought me, and somebody made a joke like, ‘Why are you wearing a cross? Like you would be religious,'” she recounts.”And then they took it away. I was really affected by that.”

Now she has a cross tattooed on her finger, so she’ll have one with her all the time.

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