Breaking the girl code, getting sued by her parents and faking a marriage for views. She may be living the glamorous influencer life, but Tana Mongeau has experienced her share of tragedy.
Breaking the Girl Code, getting sued by her parents, and faking a marriage for views—she may be living the glamorous influencer life, but Tana Mongeau has experienced her share of tragedy.
At the start of 2018, Tana Mongeau dropped a 32-minute video recounting her mother’s parenting and her father’s embarrassing behavior. She shared stories about her parents’ erratic choices, her father cursing strangers, and the persistent dysfunction in her home. When she was in her early teens, Mongeau started spending most of her time with her best friend’s family to escape the chaos. Because of their inattentiveness and unreliability, the Vegas native claims that she was always taking care of herself so much so that she had to drop out of high school to do so. Mongeau has credited her best friend’s family for saving her life and said she claimed them as her chosen parents.
In her holiday episode for MTV “No Filter: Tana Turns 21”, Mongeau explained that she had no interest in going home for Christmas because her parents were unfit for parenting. In 2023, the social media star compared her childhood to Jennette McCurdy’s memoir “I’m Glad My Mom Died”. Despite a loveless upbringing, though, she holds out for the possibility of connection, admitting on Ethan and Hila Klein’s H3 podcast, “You’ll always have that irrational hope that my parents could one day be people and apologize.”
After her MTV series aired in 2019, Mongeau’s parents decided to file a lawsuit against her for defamation. The Hefner singer talked about a wide array of topics on the show, including parts of her upbringing that weren’t flattering to the Mongeaus. So they took their daughter to court, a decision that marked the end of any cordiality. The first time Mongeau spoke about it publicly was on the H3 podcast. She told the Kleins that her parents claimed her words could cause the couple a loss of income, but Mongeau saw the suit as a cash grab. During the court proceedings, the then 22-year-old had to go down an itemized list of everything she’d publicly said about her parents and defend each statement. To avoid years of public trials, Mongeau settled and paid her parents hundreds of thousands of dollars. Now, when talking about her parents, she speaks in idioms and vagaries so they can’t go after her for slander.
Unfortunately, some people in the public eye attract stalkers, but it turns out that Tana Mongeau’s alleged stalker knew her before fame. In a 2015 video, 17-year-old Mongeau explained that she had a stalker since second grade. She recounted how he followed her in real life and online and declared his love for her throughout grade school. Later that year, Mongeau announced she had been able to get her stalker arrested, but he resurfaced the next year, allegedly broke into her house, and left Polaroids he took of her sleeping. She was also convinced he tapped her phone, as her apps acted suspiciously, and disturbing photos would appear in her gallery. Mongeau posted an update in 2016 and responded to viewer criticism about her choice not to share his name, “I am terrified of this human being. I live my everyday life terrified of the capabilities of this human being.” She admitted her fear had escalated to the point where she considered hiring a bodyguard. In 2021, Mongeau updated fans that her stalker had returned; when in Miami, her phone had gone missing and was used to harass her ex. Suddenly her phone reappeared in one of her purses, along with other strange and disturbing happenings. Guarded by security, she finally chose to reveal his name, William. She finished the video saying she needed guards to live with her forever.
Tana Mongeau has been open about her dating history online, but one of her most well-known relationships was with Disney Channel alumni Bella Thorne. After meeting in 2017, the two quickly became an item, posting romantic photos and being seen out in public more and more. Over a year into their relationship, the duo decided to turn into a throuple with Derek Ryan Smith, known by his fans as the rapper Mod Sun. Thorne and Mongeau split in February 2019, and then the Disney actor and Smith broke up 2 months later. Shortly after, Smith and Mongeau decided to date each other alone, which the Shake It Up star did not take kindly to. Thorne tweeted, “Tana and I are no longer good. She broke girl code I’m over it.” This started a long back-and-forth on X (formerly known as Twitter), where Thorne accused the influencer of using her for clout. In June 2019, during her engagement to fellow YouTuber Jake Paul, Mongeau admitted she wanted the actress to take her back. In December 2020, Thorne dropped the song “Stupid Fing Bh.” Fans quickly figured out it was a diss track about Mongeau, and the song reignited their online feuding, with Mongeau posting a video reacting to the track. But in 2023, Mongeau claimed that the two have since let bygones be bygones and have moved on.
After her breakups with Bella Thorne and Derek Ryan Smith, 20-year-old Mongeau started locking lips with YouTuber and boxer Jake Paul. Going public with their relationship in April 2019, quickly after beginning to date, Paul asked Mongeau to marry him at her 21st birthday party that June. The two exchanged vows in July 2019 in a $500,000 Las Vegas wedding that was filmed for Mongeau’s MTV show. Fans immediately speculated that the marriage was faked for publicity. Soon after, In Touch Weekly reported that their wedding was not legally binding. Only a month later, Paul was photographed with one of his ex-girlfriends, which prompted Mongeau’s confession that her mental health had been declining since the wedding. Still, the two defended their relationship until its official conclusion in January 2020. Initially, the breakup seemed mutual and respectful, but in 2021, Paul referred to his ex as a “sloth” in a TikTok video. Mongeau clapped back with minor threats and shared her shock over his statement. Both YouTubers have confirmed and expressed regret over their fake marriage.
David Dobrik’s Vlog Squad once entertained almost 20 million subscribers and accumulated over 7 billion views. The Vlog Squad was a group of rotating regulars on Dobrik’s channel, which once included then-teenaged Tana Mongeau. The group was well-beloved until people started paying attention to the inappropriate behaviors exhibited, including bullying and harassment of Mongeau. The biggest perpetrators in the group were Dobrik and his comedic partner Jason Nash. In several vlogs, Dobrik and mid-40s Nash would make sexual comments about Mongeau. The men often put the then 19-year-old on the spot and pushed her even when she was in a relationship. One time, Nash and Mongeau were on a fake date for a YouTube video, and the two ended up in a store dressing room together. Off-camera, Nash kissed her, which Mongeau was not expecting, and vlogged her response, stating that she was confused and had thought that the date was fake.
Tana Mongeau has been honest about her past recreational drug use, but it was a surprise to fans to learn she had been battling an addiction to the prescription drug Xanax. In 2020, after the release of her MTV reality show “Tana Turns 21”, Mongeau posted a tell-all video about her experience and why 2019 was one of the worst years of her life. “I was definitely just like taking enough to where it was like I wasn’t trying to like kill myself, but I definitely didn’t care if I died,” she recalled. How she started smoking weed when she was 13 and how she used it as a numbing agent, which led to her trying and using different substances as well. It wasn’t until she turned 20 that she considered this behavior to be unhealthy for her. She also revealed she was smoking so much tobacco that her lungs started to suffer. Nearly 3/4 into production on the show, Mongeau said she knew if she didn’t change her life choices, she was going to die. Since then, Mongeau has gone through periods of sobriety. On the Zach Sang Show in April 2023, she explained that she didn’t want to give up substances completely but that she was disinterested in becoming dependent on something.
In 2021, Tana Mongeau dated and fell out with rapper Chris Miles. “Let’s give it up for my ex Chris Miles because he really… there’s not many people who can out-toxic Tana’s toxic.” The couple was hot and cold for months. In October 2021, the “FaceTime” singer posted a since-deleted TikTok with a cryptic caption and an accompanying Steve Harvey audio about men showing you their true selves. But fans were even more confused after Miles posted the response, “Someone got to take her phone away when she’s drunk,” while in bed with her. Soon after, both of them took to X. Mongeau posted a series of heartbroken tweets and called her relationship unhealthy. Miles took a different approach and posted on his Instagram story that he was single. Another ex of Mongeau, rapper Lil Xan, went on to collaborate with Miles on the 2021 song “Miss Me,” inspired by their romances with the influencer. In a Paparazzi interview, Miles said he had love for his ex-girlfriend but accused her of promiscuity. He also covered up the tattoo Mongeau gave him of her initials with a bullet to symbolize her as a bullet he dodged.
In 2023, Tana Mongeau revealed she had a new stalker. She recounted on a 2023 episode of the “Canceled with Tana Mongeau” podcast how he started harassing her and her best friend on OnlyFans in 2019 and had even sent the duo a photo of him standing outside of their house with a knife. When she moved multiple times, the terrifying stranger always found her new address and left her gifts and copious love notes. On one occasion, the stalker sent her a food she had mentioned craving online. Mongeau reported that the police dismissed her concerns and blamed her career as a content creator for these experiences. She was also unable to get a restraining order since he didn’t have a permanent address. Similar to her previous stalker, this man would send Mongeau unsolicited photos and refer to her as his girlfriend or lover. But Mongeau explained that she found this one a lot scarier than the one before, especially since the relationship is parasocial. “I feel like the stalker I have right now makes my first stalker really look like a cakewalk.” She started paying $30,000 for security and hired a private investigator. She stopped posting her location on social media as well, but he still managed to find her out in the world or at home.
In multiple videos, Tana Mongeau has confided about her dealings with her mental health. During her messy marriage to Jake Paul, she posted a video that addressed her mental health decline, a decision she found therapeutic. In May 2020, Mongeau admitted that by the end of the year prior, she was at rock bottom and having suicidal thoughts. She shared that she had been bottling up and numbing her feelings for years and attributed a lot of her pain to her abusive and chaotic childhood. In 2019, while filming for MTV, she asked the producers to use her confessionals about her mental health struggles to promote awareness of what suicidal ideation is like, which they ultimately did not do. For a while, Mongeau feared asking for help because she was afraid people would think she was complaining while having a perfect life, but she got over that hurdle and documented her healing process in a follow-up video. “To film real happiness feels great.”
If you or anyone you know is having suicidal thoughts, please dial or text 988 to speak with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. You can also seek help by visiting 988lifeline.org.