Thought Catalog: How did you being on 16 & Pregnant and Teen Mom come about?
Farrah Abraham: I was acting and modeling at the time for extra money in high school when I found out I was pregnant. I told one of my coaches I still wanted to keep working and she found out that MTV was casting for pregnant teens. I made a tape, I sent it in, they called and 16 & Pregnant was born. Then it spun off into Teen Mom and I did that for four years.
TC: What have you been up to build your personal brand over past year or so?
FA: All I’ve really been doing is living my life as it comes given the age that I am every year. Just getting through my personal struggles and becoming a better person as I get older. I’m developing myself to be better, but there’s always more that I can do. I roll with the punches and don’t try to remain relevant, I just try to live my life and people find me to be interesting.
TC: You wrote a book.
FA: Two of ‘em.
TC: What was the writing process of your books like?
FA: My first book was My Teenage Dream Ended and the experience was therapeutic and helpful for me, so I knew it could be life changing or helpful to others. I wrote part in Denmark when I was with my family, but whenever I had alone time or was moving I worked on it. I think one thing that was super cool was switching locations as I wrote; it stretched my imagination and helped bring up different memories of my past.
My second book is called Passy Perfume, which is a children’s book that I wrote with my daughter. It’s so beneficial to have a child’s imagination involved in the creation of a book because how they think is so fresh and wonderful.
TC: How difficult, or easy has it been to work on different things while making time for family and raising your daughter?
FA: Well I’m pretty amazing – I’m not trying to give myself a compliment, but I am confident and proud of myself because I get everything done. When it comes to running errands, going out of town, paying bills, doing new projects, taking my daughter to school, picking her up, making dinner, taking her to bed – I’m a multi-tasker so I can balance everything. I’m not focused on being owed sleep or relaxation. As long as I get to spend time with my family while I’m in town or with a friend while I’m doing an appearance, if my time is spent where I feel like my heart, body and soul need to be, then that’s where I’m happiest.
TC: So time spent stressing isn’t something you tend to do?
FA: Right, for example I’m going through a DWI situation and you know what, the government does not make it hard to pay the fines, do the probation, take the classes and do all of this extra work on top of your everyday life. I see some people who drag it out over a year, but I got everything done in a week. I wanted to move on with my life and I think it helps to get off of procrastination, kick ourselves in the butt and move forward.
TC: What’s been the coolest aspect of your popularity and the worst?
FA: The best part is traveling — going all over, getting perks – although I think lots of women can get perks in life. I’m just thankful for the extra stuff and the fun you get to have. The worst part is that you can’t trust people as much or have relationships, which kind of hurts your personal life, and I don’t like that side of things. I’m a very normal person and if I can’t date or have friends and go out, I kind of have an issue with that. It comes with the territory but I hope I can find trusting people to be in my life.
TC: Do you get sick of paparazzi, TMZ and other gossip sites?
FA: I try to embrace everything but I don’t like some of the magazines who play devil’s advocate, twist things or portray what I do in a negative light. I find that kind of unforgivable and I tend not to work with those reporters and editors again, because I think if they want to conduct business that way, they should work with different people who don’t mind it. Because I am a mother trying to move forward in a positive way, I don’t embrace that negativity. As for paparazzi, and the gentlemen who take photographs — I understand that’s their hustle and their work. That’s how they make money and support their family, so I’m okay with that.
TC: Do any of the headlines hurt your feelings or bother you anymore, or have you grown impervious to that stuff?
FA: I think I’ve become immune to that because I’m stronger than those headlines and what people put in trash magazines. I like real articles about what’s really going on; otherwise I don’t buy or look at it.
TC: What was the whole Charlie Sheen text message thing about?
FA: (chuckles) I think TMZ always likes to be crazy with their stories and stuff, but my relationship with Charlie – I just reached out because we might be working on a show together and I wanted to make a nice communication bridge. That’s truthfully all I’m about when it comes to working with or meeting someone. I think he’s into his women and goddesses and everything, and I’m not going to speak for him or what TMZ said he said, but I’m not attracted to him, I wasn’t seeking anything more than being friends and hanging out. So, that was the whole story, and it just is what it is.
TC: Have there been any significant differences between being a teen mom and a twenty something mom?
FA: I think so and I believe other parents would agree. When you’re a teen, things are a little bit more dramatic and overall harder. There are a lot of age restrictions, which can make it difficult to have all of the freedoms needed to fulfill your role as a parent and have a good foundation for your family. Now that I’m 22 and things have come together for me, it’s just much easier and I can have some focus on my career.
TC: Would you embrace being a role model for younger girls or do you feel like that’s unwanted responsibility?
FA: I want to show others what I know so that they can make a better future for themselves. Being a role model isn’t a chore and I’m not responsible for people’s actions, but every true role model is just being themselves and if that helps others, it’s not stress or an extra effort. You give advice and help on what you’re knowledgeable about and that’s it. I just hope to continue helping others.
TC: Do you regret your sex tape?
FA: Well I’ll never do porn or any videos in the future, and that’s not my career goal. I know some women in that industry and it’s fine for them, but I’ve worked for a degree and established platforms for myself so that I don’t need to go any further with that. It was hurtful because I knew that I needed to let go of the rights to the video since it was going to get out there anyway. I let it go in the most professional manner, including lawyers and attorneys and I came out fortunate. But I don’t trust going that route again, so there won’t be more.
TC: What do you say to those who are critical about things that have happened on your path to popularity?
FA: I think all of us are critics – I know I’m a huge critic in my personal life. The thing is, the biggest misconception about who I am and what I’m about is that I’m trying to gain popularity. I’ve never been the type to try to fit in or do whatever everyone else does. I don’t try to be cool, I’m not sure why I was popular growing up or in high school, that’s just where I was placed. For people who don’t know me, I guess it’s easy to be a critic and feel negatively about things, but the main thing is that I don’t try to win popularity points. Still, I understand that all of us should be critics and have opinions and I think that’s healthy.
TC: What do you have in the works for the future?
FA: Right now I’m working on my restaurant — it’s a very innovative way of doing things. It’s very digital, quicker, better customer service and family friendly. I’m working on making healthier versions of our favorite junk foods such as hotdogs, donuts and that type of thing. Eventually I want to expand this concept so that it goes all over and even those in other countries can enjoy it. I’ve worked very hard on this and I just really hope to see it blossom.
Aside from the restaurant I still plan on being to be a part of entertainment, whether that’s writing another book, doing shows, music or other events and appearances – things like that. I embrace every side of things and I’m very excited about my future.