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After news broke that U.S. President Bill Clinton had an affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, misconceptions about their infamous relationship arose. One of the biggest ones people were convinced was true was that Lewinsky had only gotten into a relationship with Clinton to become a celebrity.

In a 2000 interview with Larry King, Lewinsky slammed this misconception, sharing that she had real feelings for the President, which came about after she had built up an attraction to his powerfulness.

Monica Lewinsky posing next to Bill Clinton inside the White House
Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton | Getty Images

Monica Lewinsky said she and Bill Clinton had ‘chemistry’

In 2000, Monica Lewinsky appeared on an episode of Larry King Live, where she opened up about her infamous affair with former U.S. President Bill Clinton.

Lewinsky began the interview by setting the record straight on the biggest misconception about her and Clinton’s relationship. According to Lewinsky, the media was convinced that she had conjured up a scheme to seduce the President and later expose their relationship so that she could become famous.

Lewinsky shared that that couldn’t have been “the farthest thing from the truth,” sharing that she had gone to Washington with the intent to obtain some work experience before heading off to grad school.

Later in the interview, Lewinsky revealed that she was attracted to Clinton, noting that the power he exuded is what initially captivated her.

“People are all human beings, and that’s what I came to see. That’s the person I came to know,” Lewinsky said of Clinton. “There was a portion, of course, when I look back now, there was a portion of what attracted me must have been the awe of him being a powerful man in this environment. Not to take away from who he is as a real person.”

She continued, “It was that chemistry and was the fact that he was President part of that chemistry? I don’t know. Maybe, probably? I was there because there was chemistry, I wasn’t there because, oh, this is the President.”

Lewinsky had ‘intense feelings’ for the former President

While still on the topic of her relationship with Bill Clinton, Larry King asked Monica Lewinsky what it was like being in love with someone she couldn’t have.

Though the question stumped her at first, Lewinsky shared that it was frustrating, especially since she had strong feelings for Clinton.

Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky attending the White House Christmas party in 1996
Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky | Getty Images

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“It’s hard to describe because there’s the euphoria you feel when you have intense feelings for someone and you love them,” Lewinsky explained. “But, there’s, exactly as you say, when you can’t have them, there’s frustration, and there’s a lot of sadness that comes with it.

She added, “For an individual, aside from morality, I think that can be the worst about being involved with someone who’s married or someone who’s even emotionally unavailable. That’s certainly something I had to work on within myself.”

Monica Lewinsky denied that her relationship with Bill Clinton was one-sided

Although Monica Lewinsky had strong feelings for Bill Clinton, many questioned if he felt the same way about her.

After news of their infamous affair made headlines, media outlets reported that the pair’s relationship was “one-sided,” alleging that she was the “giver” while Clinton was the “taker.”

When asked about this during the interview, Lewinsky claimed that that was “absolutely false,” noting that she and Clinton had a “mutual, physical relationship” that was also emotional.

Though Lewinsky said that she and Clinton had a real relationship that included plenty of give-and-take, he begged to differ, telling the media outlets that she was the primary “giver.”

“I have had to deal with a lot of difficult emotional feelings of that. I do believe that’s what he tried to lead people to believe,” Lewinsky explained to King. “For a woman, that’s incredibly degrading.”