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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5821
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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My daughter is 17 and a junior in high school. She is over

Resolved Question:

My daughter is 17 and a junior in high school. She is over weight and smells and her hair curly hair has gone into dreads. Kids are starting to talk behind her back to her brother about how bad she smells. She has no friends and doesn't seem to care about anything. I don't want to break her heart and tell her but should I?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 6 years ago.

Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.

There are a couple of things I wanted to clarify.

Is this a sudden change for your daughter? If not, how long has she been this way?

Did anything traumatic happen to her recently?

Have you been able to have her evaluated by a therapist?


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
The eating for the last couple of years. which is the weight gain. The smell for about a year. The hair in the last 4 to 5 months. Also her room is full of trash. All the food she brings up to her room. Chip bags, ice cream cartons, dirty plates, glasses and it smells in there.
Her father and I split up 3 1/2 years ago. He is an alcoholic and has nothing to do with her. She says she hates him but gets teary eyed. This is all stuff I have tried to talk to her doctor about so I can get a referral for a therapist and the doctor twice now has said "oh she's fine, she's a great girl". The last time I went took her there was what I told you up above. I don't know where to turn next. I don't want to hurt her feelings she has been hurt enough from her dad. Thank you for listening.
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 6 years ago.

Thanks for the additional information.

It sounds like one of two things. Either one, she had something happen to her that she is not telling you about like some type of trauma, or two, she is more upset about the divorce than she is letting on.

Has she talked with you about her feelings? Does she seem ok in other areas of her life like grades?

It sounds like her doctor has a good relationship with her, but not referring her for a therapeutic eval is not a good idea. She needs to be seen to determine what is going on. If you have to be referred through her doctor, you may want to consider asking for a second opinion and talking to the new doctor about your concerns. If you do not need to have her doctor do a referral, then you can find a therapist by searching on line at If you attend church, you may be able to talk with your pastor about a referral.

Approach your daughter about this by telling her how much you love her. Let her know you want to talk with her about how she is doing. Use a neutral, non judgmental tone of voice. Let her talk about anything. If she starts off by talking about something that seems unimportant, it might be her way of testing how you react to her. So just let her talk. Even if you do not get very far the first conversation, let it go. It may take a while for her to build up to telling you about whatever is bothering her.

Right now, she is holding her feelings in and covering them with overeating, not caring for herself and isolating herself. With those kinds of symptoms, there is something going on for her that is traumatizing. With some patience and care, she will eventually be able to let her feelings out and get help.

I hope this has helped you,

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