Ellie Goulding Went on "a Few Dates" With Niall Horan But Says She "Was Never in a Relationship" With Ed Sheeran!

Singer says she and Taylor Swift are "bothered" by the interest in female musicians' love lives

By Zach Johnson Jun 02, 2015 11:01 PMTags
E! Placeholder Image

This is turning into a game of "he said, she said."

Last year, Ed Sheeran implied in several interviews that his song "Don't" was about his friend, One Direction singer Niall Horan, stealing Ellie Goulding. Rumors of a love triangle persisted, and in May, he told Entertainment Weekly that it had been blown out of proportion. "I never let it slip. What happened was one of the newspapers in England just printed that it was confirmed when it never was. We got in touch, and they took the story down. But obviously the damage had already been done by that point because every other newspaper picked up on it," Sheeran explained. "So I never actually confirmed it." In a 2013 radio interview, however, Sheeran revealed that he'd enjoyed a brief romance with Goulding.

What does Goulding have to say about her alleged romances?

"I did go on a few dates with Niall but I was never in a relationship with Ed," the "Burn" singer says in Elle U.K.'s Body Confidence issue, on newsstands Thursday. "I have absolutely no idea where that came from and why it was turned into such a big thing. I find it so frustrating that female musicians are constantly defined by the men they have or haven't dated. It's something I've talked about with [Taylor Swift] a lot. She definitely feels that. She gets bothered by it. It's like, you can be a great artist, you can write great songs, but the thing that everyone is going to talk about is some relationship they think you have had or not had. It's definitely something we both think happens to female artists over male artists."

Goulding is currently dating McFly's Dougie Poynter, who could be "The One."

"He's been through a lot, and he has a quiet depth that I love," the singer says. "When I was a teenager, I fancied him but I thought he was so out of my league. Way too good-looking for me. Calvin Harris has already offered to play at our wedding. Not that we've organized one. But the offer has been made."

Today, Goulding is happier than ever—and not just because of Poynter. "When I started out, I couldn't cope with it. I felt embarrassed by it. I didn't quite know who I was supposed to be," she says of fame. "I was never confident in my looks. I hated my chin, my nose, my eyebrows. I was told by people at my record company to watch videos of other girls, like Little Boots, and Elly Jackson from La Roux, and try and look like them. I had panic attacks so bad I couldn't leave my flat; I couldn't bear people looking at me. I would worry that I would never be able to sing because I couldn't even get up. I was also horribly ashamed of myself because I felt like some sort of drama queen and all I wanted to be was strong."

The full interview appears in Elle U.K.'s July Issue.

It is also available as a digital edition on Apple Newsstand.