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Can You Solve This Riddle That Baffled the Internet?

Michele Debczak
It's harder than you'd think.
It's harder than you'd think. / Delmaine Donson/Getty Images (young woman); ahmad agung wijayanto/Shutterstock (question marks)
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This tricky puzzle that stumped the web isn’t related to phonics or first-grade math. It’s a short riddle written in what appears to be plain English, but the longer you stare at it the more confounding it becomes. According to 22 Words, the question reads:

If Teresa's daughter is my daughter's mother, what am I to Teresa?

Confused? Based on the response on social media, you’re in good company. Luckily the brainteaser doesn’t stop there. It comes with some multiple choice answers: The person asking the question is either Teresa’s grandmother, daughter, granddaughter, or Teresa herself.

the word 'answer' in a blue text bubble
Justin Dodd/Mental Floss

If you guessed "daughter," you’re right. In this scenario, Teresa is the mom of the person asking the question. The riddle is just a more complicated way of saying "I am my mother’s daughter."

In case your brain isn’t completely fried at this point, here are some more notoriously tricky riddles from history.

[h/t 22 Words]

A version of this story originally ran in 2017; it has been updated for 2022.

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