What Is It Like to Be 13 Years Old?

Health & Wellbeing

The Times is looking for participants for a project on teenage life.

The headlines seem to scream at us: Teenage anxiety is on the rise. Visits to the E.R. are surging. Instagram might be harming girls’ body image. Teen girls are developing tics on TikTok.

But what is it actually like to be a young teenager with a phone, living at an age when self-esteem is at its most fragile, amid an ongoing pandemic?

We want to hear from young teenagers directly. Are you 13, or turning 13 soon? We’d like to hear about your experiences — the ups and downs, the awkward moments, the things older people just don’t get. Does social media make you feel good or bad about yourself? What has middle school been like for you since you returned in person? What do you want people to know about your experiences?

If you’re interested in participating, please answer the questions below. We will not publish your name with your submission without contacting you first, and being a part of this project will require the consent of a parent or guardian. We may use your contact information to follow up with you.


Tell us about being 13.


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