1,000 Tips for Teens- New book guides teens through life’s challenges

Kelly FalardeauSPRUCE GROVE, AB, Nov. 20, 2012/ Troy Media/

“Have you ever contemplated suicide?”

When Kelly Falardeau, author of 1,000 Tips for Teens, received this text message during a presentation she was giving to a group of 150 tech-savvy Grade 7 teens, she was unsure how to respond. She had also received four more just like it.

“Women” she says, “who I speak to mostly, don’t ask me about suicide, they ask me about how to feel great and how to look better.”

But her thoughts quickly turned to one of her daughters, who had turned 13 two weeks before, when she realized that she, too, could be thinking about suicide.

She finally shared a story with the audience from her own teen years and thoughts of suicide.

When she was two, she tells them, she was in an accident that left burns over 75 per cent of her body. And when she was in Grade 11, she used to pray before she went to sleep: “Dear God, please don’t make me wake up in the morning, but if I have to, could you at least make me ‘scar-less’ and pretty like all the other girls? Thank you, Amen.”

She wants teens to know that, even though suicide is at an all-time high, life is worth living.

“Do you understand that suicide is final?” she now tells teens. “If you actually succeed, no more ‘Facebooking’ or texting your best friends, no more Justin Bieber or One Direction concerts; no more sleepovers. There’s no more of any of that.”

We have to tell them, she says, that “we haven’t given up on them. We want to show them we care.”

While contemplating her own suicide as a teen, Falardeau says, she also hadn’t thought about the pain and suffering she would have caused her family, her friends and the people who loved her. Falardeau admits that these thoughts still occur to her as an adult, but that thinking about her little nine-year old son keeps her alive.

“I would never want my son to go through that pain of never seeing his mom again.”

It isn’t uncommon for Falardeau to receive text messages during her presentations. In fact, she received 100 during that same presentation. “I allow them to text me their questions,” she says, because it helps ensure she tells her teen audience what they want to know, and not just what she thinks they ought to know.

To get her message out beyond her physical audiences, Falardeau and co-author Martin Presse decided to write 1,000 Tips for Teens. But they wanted the book to be about more than just suicide. They wanted it to become a resource that would guide teens through the challenges they were encountering in their lives.

The two approached friends and family members to contribute 100 tips for teens. The interest was so overwhelming however, Falardeau says, that 100 became 1,000.

Falardeau, an international motivational speaker and best-selling author of two books No Risk No Rewards and Self Esteem Doesn’t Come in a Bottle, was recently recognized for her efforts with a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, presented by Donald S. Ethell, Lieutenant Governor of Alberta, and the Rona Ambrose, the federal Minister of Public Works and Government Services and member of Parliament for Edmonton-Spruce Grove. The Medal is bestowed upon an individual, “who like Her Majesty, have dedicated themselves to service, to family, community and country,” said Ambrose.

1,000 Tips for Teens is being launched today on Amazon.com to coincide with National Child Day, celebrated in Canada and many other countries as Universal Children’s Day, to honour children around the world.

Greg Gazin, a Tech Columnist, Small Business and Technology Speaker and Senior Editor at Troy Media contributed to 1,000 Tips for Teens. He can be reached at Gadgetguy.CA on Twitter @gadgetgreg or you can find him on Empire Avenue at (e)GADGET1.

This article is FREE to use on your websites or in your publications. However, Troy Media, with a link to its web site, MUST be credited.

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