‘Teen Mom 2’ Star Leah Messer Reveals During Book Promotion That Was Sexually & Physically Abused as a Child

Leah Messer recently revealed some very personal information to to her fans.

Over the weekend, the Teen Mom 2 star opened up for the first time about enduring both sexual and physical abuse as a child. She also revealed that these topics would be further addressed in her upcoming book, Hope, Grace & Faith.

Leah made the admissions during an Instagram Live Q&A session on Friday, according to The Sun. She explained to fans that the “decisions” she’s made throughout her life will “make sense” once they read her book and read about the trauma she’s experienced. 


“They’ll understand the childhood drama and [my] co-dependency in relationships,” she continued. “Everything I endured in my childhood from sexual abuse to physical abuse was probably the hardest thing.” 

Leah did not reveal the name of her abuser(s) during the Q&A.

The online description for her book also alludes to the hardships Leah faced while growing up.

“Leah takes readers behind the scenes and shares an intimate, often heartbreaking, portrait of her turbulent childhood in rural West Virginia, the rock bottom that forced her to reevaluate her life, and her triumphant break from toxic relationships and self-destructive cycles to live her life with hope, grace, and faith.”

During the Instagram Q&A session, Leah also talked about her biological father and his issues with substance abuse. During the Instagram Live session (which Leah’s sister Victoria also participated in), Leah said she discusses her dad “a whole lot” in her new book. 

“With the opioid epidemic we are facing today, my dad always ties into that,” she said. “I started doing my own research on when my dad started struggling with addiction and why he struggled with addiction. 

“Come to find out, in between 1995 and 1997 they started prescribing Oxycodone,” she continued. “It was a highly addictive drug they swore wasn’t an addictive drug. My father broke his neck and back working on bridges in West Virginia. From there, he went to some doctor for worker’s comp. That’s how my dad became addicted to the medication and still is to this day.” 

As The Ashley has previously reported, Leah’s father, Gary Lee Miller, has struggled with substance abuse for quite some time and in 2011, he was arrested for possessing painkillers that were not prescribed to him. In August 2017, Leah revealed on social media that her dad had reached out to her for the first time in a while. (Gary has been seen on very few episodes of ‘Teen Mom 2’ over the years.) 

Leah and her dad on her wedding day in 2012 during an episode of ‘Teen Mom 2.’

“It’s the same thing every call,” she tweeted in 2017. “Maybe this time he really is going to choose life over death. All I can do is [pray].”

In October 2018, Leah opened up during an episode of her Life Reboot podcast about her strained relationship with her biological father, admitting that it may be partly responsible for the problems she’s had with men in her life —- including her divorces from Corey Simms and Jeremy Calvert. 

“Well, thanks for that, Gar!”

“I wanted a dad,” she said. “I was someone who really wanted that father figure. I wanted that feeling of love from a man … two divorces in a row, I mean… “ 

Because of her own family’s struggles, Leah revealed she is hoping to help “provide treatment facilities in West Virginia” and possibly work on a documentary about addiction.

“Whatever I have to do to do that, I will do,” she said. “I’ve been there. I went through it. I’ve done it.” 

Leah herself admitted during an episode of ‘Teen Mom 2’ that she had been using painkillers to deal with pain she says started when she gave birth to her daughter Addie. For years, she was reluctant to talk about her drug issues and continued to deny she had a drug problem, even though she was basically forced to seek treatment by MTV in 2015 due to rumors of drug use.

Leah has since opened up more about that time in her life, as she will do further in her upcoming book. 

The cover of Leah’s book…

“The purpose behind the book is for others to be just as vulnerable and be able to share their truth without feeling shameful,” Leah told Hollywood Life in January. “For the longest time I think there were a lot of things in my life that happened that I felt ashamed of, definitely.

“Going through all of that I didn’t see what the world was seeing, which is also why I get to connect with others that are struggling with addiction, struggling with maybe breaking familial cycles,” she continued. “At that time in my life, honestly everyone could’ve told me until they were blue in the face that there was an issue. And it’s almost like when you’re struggling and in that place you don’t see it. It’s like you’re a completely different person in the same body.”

Leah’s upcoming book, Hope, Grace & Faith, is set to be released May 5. Click here for more details. 

RELATED STORY: Jenelle Evans (Finally) Confirms She’s Back with David Eason & Explains Why She Moved Back to The Land: Get a Complete Breakdown of Her Recent Q&A Video

(Photos: MTV; Instagram; Post Hill Press) 

18 Responses

  1. So, I guess what she is saying is some dude diddled her as a youth and that’s why she blew Robbie the night before her wedding? Weird

    stay lit

  2. [* Shield plugin marked this comment as “Trash”. Reason: Failed Bot Test (expired) *]
    This franchise should just go ahead and trademark the word “trauma”. Barring medical context, I have never heard a group of people use that word so nonchalantly and constantly in my life more than the TM girls do.

  3. [* Shield plugin marked this comment as “Trash”. Reason: Failed Bot Test (expired) *]
    We all have childhood issues. Not all of us become shitty people though. Take ownership for your screw ups and stop blaming your childhood.

  4. [* Shield plugin marked this comment as “Trash”. Reason: Failed Bot Test (expired) *]
    Does she think she’s the only one who lives in a rural place where big pharma Purdue preyed upon the coal miners and other workers who were injured on the job? My dad was prescribed oxy in 96’ after being covered up in the coal mines and within 5yrs we were bankrupt and every single family member went on to be a drug addict including myself. My father was a monster who molested and groomed me from birth u til age 13 then fed me rx drugs to ‘keep me quiet’ I had daddy issues allowed men to use and abuse me all the while falling further than rock bottom I went under the rocks for 12yrs I lost my entire life to drugs the only difference is I didn’t get pregnant at 16 and become famous for it then never have to work a day in my life…..moral of this story is Leah needs to pick herself up to the point where she takes responsibility for her own actions. My father feeding me pills may have helped me become addicted but I chose to keep taking them once I was addicted. Where we live there are no rehabs or consistent NA meetings so there is no hope to turn to feels like. I remember watching intervention and thinking omg I wish someone cared enough about me to put me on that show because I wanted to be clean. Thankfully I found real help after 12 long yrs and now I have almost 9yrs completely clean and sober. My father has passed and I finally feel released from him and the trauma he caused me he no longer can hurt me. I hope Leah does use her platform to bring addiction help to her area. Anyone in the position to help should because like this crazy covid19….addiction effects us all even if it’s not u who is addicted it is a family disease where in it effects the whole family to a degree. Addicts don’t want to be addicts most just don’t think or believe they can get real help and change and they don’t know where to turn to.
    Keep you’re word Leah, help others and use the platform u have for good. Stay safe and healthy!

    1. Sorry about your own childhood, but no, I do not believe she thinks she the only one to ever be in this situation. It did not sound like she made that notion at all, actually. She is telling her own story, and this was part of it. Just like it was part of your own story. Again, sorry about your past, but I hope you really find the peace with it to the point you do not feel someone’s else’s past is in competition with your own.

  5. Ugh, poor Leah. This is probably why she has/had commitment issues with her husbands, among other major issues she had. You could always tell she didn’t have an easy upbringing, but I will say out of all of the ones on TM2 and OG that had problems with substance abuse, losing custody, mental health, etc…Leah seems to be the only one who took it all seriously. I can’t knock her for trying her best. I think it’s great she’s being vulnerable and open in hopes to help other people going through similar things.

  6. I feel for Leah, I do, but at some point she has to stop blaming other people and her childhood for her shitty decisions.

    Yes, she has grown and is changing and becoming a better person, but she has YET to accept responsibility for some of her shitty decisions. Not taking Ali to therapy, the girls consistently being late for school, not feeding her damn kids or cleaning her house were all decisions that she has made that she has not owned up to. She blames her shitty childhood and past traumas for her own decisions and actions.

    I’m glad she’s better now, for her daughters’ sake.

    1. It seems like you’re going off stuff she did years ago when she refused to be held accountable for anything and blamed it all on MTV editing. I took what she was saying as more of explaining, not blaming anyone for her decisions. If anything she’s the only one out of anyone in the franchise that has taken any accountability for being trash in the past, and hasn’t reverted back to old habits.

      She has admitted the part(s) she played in the divorce from Jeremy, she’s admitted to having a pill problem, and to me she’s taking accountability for the kids truancy, losing custody and “bad food” by not letting those situations happen again. She lost custody of the girlses once, and seems damned to let it happen again, unlike someone like Jenelle who doesn’t give a damn about anyone but herself and her soulmate of the week, or Amber who just cries crocodile tears and promises to change, only to beat her next boyfriend. While Leah is FAR from perfect, her actions are showing she takes more accountability for her past than any of her words could.

      1. Saying “I had a shitty childhood so I make shitty decisions” isn’t an explanation, it’s an excuse. Not Amber blaming her mental illness excuse, but it’s still just an excuse.

        Like I said, she’s doing better now which is great, but she still has yet to say “I made shitty decisions because I made shitty decisions. I put myself before my kids.” All it’s ever been is “I was raised around shitty people so I am also a shitty person, you can’t blame me for that.”

        I was raised by addicts, in constant mess and chaos. You know what my kids don’t grow up in? Addiction and mess and chaos. I had a shitty childhood, I did not become a shitty person.

  7. Im sorry Leah experienced that trauma.
    Haven’t gone through that I would have hoped she wouldn’t encourage her prepubescent daughters to wear as much makeup as they do. It’s disturbing to watch.

    1. Oh the ignorance! Aleeah is a cheerleader. The makeup is stage makeup that every other girl on every other team is wearing. It is often required. They wear a lot of makeup so it stands out enough that you can see it from the back of the room. It’s basically part of the uniform. It’s not a matter of “letting” them wear it. If you are disturbed by it, it says more about you than Leah.

  8. Sad all the way around.

    For what it’s worth, Leah lives in a region with high levels of addiction related to drug companies incentivizing doctors to push these pills on patients. They were honestly claiming they weren’t addictive so “it’s ok to take a handful every day for your pain”. 16-20 years later it’s continuing to ravage communities that were already struggling with low education and economic growth opportunities while drug makers and their shareholders laugh all the way to the bank.

  9. I’m really proud of Leah. Even without knowing about the abuse, you could tell she had a rough childhood, but she’s really turned herself around. Yeah she’s kind of a mess with her marriages and she had an addiction problem (very common in her area), but these days she seems like a really good mother who seems to have a good direction in life. Even at her worst though, it was always really clear she adored her kids in a way we rarely see from most of the other moms (except Chelsea). When she told Corey she’d change Ali’s diapers for the rest of her life if she had to, I absolutely believed her. I also think people don’t give her enough credit for raising a child with serious/potentially fatal medical issues. That’s a massive stressor the other moms don’t have to deal with, and Leah is always on top of Ali’s medical needs. I’ll always have a soft spot for Leah, her heart’s in the right place.

    1. I agree. I could make Robbie jokes a lot but I respect Leah when shes honest. Shes a likable individual and means well. Addiction is also difficult and something she will have to deal with the rest of her life. Corey means and does well and Jeremy means well. She seems self aware which makes me believe shes still sober (also Cory Tyler’s on her @$$). Her last relationship with jason kind of proved she was doing well. I hope she mothers more than befriends her daughters. I also hope Leah is out of that cult though, that has me concerned.

    2. I’ve also always had a soft spot for Leah. She made some horrible decisions and had lousy coping skills, but completely agree re: the stresses she faced with Ali’s medical issues. She was in way over her head at a very young age. I could never figure out her mom’s deal, but Dawn isn’t the same caliber as Randy and South Dee-Kohta Mary who gave Chelsea much more emotional and financial stability. Chelsea is further ahead of the other characters on the show because of her parents.

      Leah seems to have a kind heart – she’s not mean / vindictive unlike several others on the show. She tries to be their friends even when it isn’t in her best interest. Hopefully she will continue down the right path and make something of herself after the show ends to set an example for her girls. I do worry about Gracie and Addie making the same mistakes, though.

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