Annie Fox for Teens... Hey, Terra!

Annie (AKA Hey Terra!) has been around long enough to have experienced a lot of what Life can dish out. But, it hasn’t been so long that she's forgotten what it's like to be your age. Check out some of the thousands of email questions teens from around the world have sent to Terra. You may learn something useful from her answers:

“My stepfather tells me I am ugly, fat, and stupid.”

Hey Terra,

Okay I am 14 years old and hate my life. I have a lot of guy friends but the ones that I like either have a g/f or don't wanna date... but they are willing to be friends with benefits and I don't want that. I don't know what to think of myself. Many people tell me I am beautiful, but there are some who tell me I am ugly and I believe it. The worse part is my house. I hate being here. I am always so depressed when I am here. My stepfather tells me that I am ugly, fat, stupid, and a lot of other stuff. But his son my half-brother is perfect in his eyes. He plays sports, is always home and sucks up. I don't want to change the way I am for him to like me but I feel that is the only thing that I can do. So after this school year I am moving to my father's. I don't know if what I am doing is right... I am not sure about anything anymore. So please give me advice!!!


Dear Clueless,

It sounds like you are going through a lot of intense feelings! It's never easy when a divorce splits a family up and a re-marriage brings two families together. There's a tremendous amount of getting used to (new step parents, new step siblings, etc.)

I'm sorry your stepfather is being so insensitive to you. His comments are completely unacceptable. If you can't comfortably tell him how his words make you feel then I strongly suggest that you talk privately with your mom. Try to talk with her when she's not rushing around doing other things. Try to talk with her in a calm and mature way. She is in a difficult situation too. She obviously wants her new marriage to work but she also wants you to be happy and to feel supported and loved when you are at home.

Be honest with her. Your feelings matter and she is entitled to know the truth. Even if you are planning to go to live with your dad, you and your mom and your stepfather and half-brother should be able (and willing) to figure out a way to make the time you still have together more peaceful and friendly.

The first step is letting your mom in on how unhappy you've been. Then talk about specific things that could be changed in the way family members communicate and treat each other.

If, after you talk with your mom, things don't improve, I would suggest that you go see your school counselor to talk about ways that you can cope with your situation.

I hope this helps.

Please stay in touch. I care about you.

In friendship,


Need some advice? Write to Terra. She'll give you a straight answer you can trust without any lectures.

Find Annie Fox: Find Annie on Facebook Find Annie on Twitter Find Annie on Pinterest Find Annie on YouTube Find Annie on Google+ Find Annie on LinkedIn Find Annie on Goodreads Find Annie on Quora
What's New?
''The Girls Q&A Book on Friendship: 50 Ways to Fix a Friendship Without the DRAMA'' by Annie Fox, M.Ed., illustrated by Erica De Chavez Books & Apps for Teens
''Middle School Confidential 3: What's Up With My Family?'' iOS app ''Middle School Confidential 2: Real Friends vs. the Other Kind'' iOS app ''Middle School Confidential 1: Be Confident in Who You Are'' iOS app ''The Teen Survival Guide to Dating & Relating: Real-World Advice on Guys, Girls, Growing Up, and Getting Along'' by Annie Fox M.Ed.
''Middle School Confidential, Book 3: What's Up with My Family?'' by Annie Fox, Illustrated by Matt Kindt
''Middle School Confidential, Book 2: Real Friends vs. The Other Kind'' by Annie Fox M.Ed., Illustrated by Matt Kindt
''Middle School Confidential, Book 1: Be Confident in Who You Are'' by Annie Fox, Illustrated by Matt Kindt
''Too Stressed to Think? A Teen Guide to Staying Sane When Life Makes You CRAZY'' by Annie Fox, M.Ed. and Ruth Kirschner