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Answers For Teens Blog
Friday, 1 March 2019
Hello Again
Topic: Do something

Excuses, Excuses. I did not do a February blog because I was having trouble with our web site and then I was sick. But here it is March already. We who live in the snow area are looking forward to spring time. All of you high school teens are looking forward to summer vacation. Those of you who want to work will want to start looking now. So here is an off beat suggestion. If you have a college near you see if there are any jobs available in their library or in their cafeteria. Any local day camps? Ask, Ask. Look on bulletin boards in your library, supermarket, and wherever else you know of. Above all do not get discouraged by rejections. Just keep looking something will open up. Farmers and landscapers usually need help. So do taxi services if you are old enough. You might also get in touch with the Forest Service.
https://www.fs.fed.us/working-with-us/jobs  or you might try your local pet services. Just keep trying.


Posted by answersforteens at 1:11 PM EST
Friday, 4 January 2019
Let's Talk About This Again
Topic: GO FOR IT
We have discussed before how an ambition without a plan is only a wish. Well, it's a new year. Many of us make resolutions. So pick just three or two that are most important to you and make a plan how those goals can become realities. Not doing well in school? Why? Is there a counselor or a friend who can help you figure out why? Might you have a learning disability? Can't concentrate at home? Start figuring it out. Want better friends? Start thinking where you can meet them. Alateen is a great place. Worried if you might have addiction problems? That is a bigee. Go to Alcoholics Anonymous, or In The Rooms on line. Speak of your fears.  You can do it. Make a plan.

Posted by answersforteens at 4:49 PM EST
Updated: Friday, 4 January 2019 5:00 PM EST
Tuesday, 4 December 2018
Something you may want to know about
Topic: Do You Fit Into This Scenario?

Everyone once in a while one hears about a group which makes one ask, "why didn't I know about this?"  Respect Ability is such a group. 

Simply put Respect Ability helps people who have a disability. Do you have a limb? Stutter? Learning disability? You are not alone. This is how Respect Ability describes itself:


RespectAbility is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that understands we are a stronger community when we live up to our values – when we are welcoming, diverse, moral and respect one another.

We work with entertainment, policy makers, educators, self-advocates, nonprofits, employers, faith-based organizations, philanthropists, journalists and online media to fight stigmas and advance opportunities for people with disabilities.

Led by people with disabilities and those who love them, we know that people with disabilities and their families have the same hopes and dreams as everyone else, even if they face different challenges.

We do not lobby; we educate. Our free tools and factual resources inform so people with disabilities can achieve the education, training, jobs, security and good health that everyone needs and deserves.

Mission Statement: RespectAbility fights stigmas and advances opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community. 

Want to contact them? Office Number: 202-517-6272 info@respectability.org

Want more info? https://www.respectability.org/about-us/ 

Posted by answersforteens at 11:35 AM EST
Updated: Tuesday, 4 December 2018 11:49 AM EST
Sunday, 11 November 2018

November 11, 2018

I have lately come across the Acronym HALT. A quick visit to www.acronymattic.com revealed that there are 25 different acronyms for HALT. Alcoholics Anonymous chat slang refers to HALT as: Hope, Acceptance, Love, Tolerance. 

The meaning of HALT which caught my eye was Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired. Basically HALT is just common sense that can lead to a happier life. Lets take a look.

HUNGRY: Yes, good nutrition is important. Are you eating properly? Come on, be good to yourself. If you are not sure what you need to eat check out the U.S. government food pyramid.

ANGRY: Are you angry? Many of us are. Take a journal and make a list of what is making you angry. Do you feel you have been mistreated? What can you do to alleviate your anger? Is there a therapy group that you can join? Alateen meetings lets you talk and express your feelings? If you have health insurance it may cover private therapy. A university near you may let you work with a therapist in training. Bottom line is - do something.
LONELY: Lonely is a bigee. Not all of us are social or good at making friends. Get yourself into a group. Belonging does not mean that you have to be overly social. If you have a hobby join an association - be it a sports group, a music group, a volunteer group, or take a painting class or join a sculptor facility.  Get out there.
TIRED: Tired is something we tend to ignore. How many hours of sleep do you get? A good night's sleep gives you positive energy. What can you do to get proper sleep? Go to sleep with the TV off. Read something you like before you turn off the light. If you have sleepless issues you may want to see your physician.

The heart of the matter is to handle each one of these issues.

Posted by answersforteens at 2:30 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, 11 November 2018 2:44 PM EST
Monday, 22 October 2018
Have a disability?

Some of you may be interested in the following information:

My name is Ben Spangenberg, and I am the National Leadership Program Director at RespectAbility. We are a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities for diverse people with disabilities. As an openly gay man with a disability, I understand what it means to face barriers, prejudice and discrimination in the workforce. That is why it is so important for me to help the next generation of leaders acquire the skills and experience needed to be in high demand for the best policy, communications and development jobs.

I want to let you know about our National Leadership Program for young leaders who want to go into public policy, advocacy, communications or Hollywood, and who are committed to creating a better future. RespectAbility is looking to hire the next generation of leaders to be our Fellows, and we would love to have your help with identifying talented students who are committed to equal rights.

Here are facts we want to change:

  • Only 65 percent of students with disabilities graduate high school and only seven percent complete college.
  • Only 1-in-3 working age people with disabilities has a job.
  • There are 750,000 people with disabilities currently incarcerated in our nation.
RespectAbility currently is looking to hire Fellows for our Spring cohort that runs from January 14 to May 17, with flexibility for start dates. We will accept 12-15 outstanding applicants from around the country who want to advance disability issues and who are seeking careers in media, public policy or advocacy. The deadline is Nov. 13.

Fellows are given the unique opportunity to work with our highly trained program staff on communications and stigma reductionpublic policynonprofit fundraising or faith inclusion.

As a Fellow, they will have the chance to help our mission of:
  • Reducing the “school-to-prison-pipeline” for people with disabilities by advocating for students with disabilities so they get all of the tools they need to succeed in the classroom and beyond.
  • Erasing the nearly 50 percent gap in labor force participation rate so that diverse people with disabilities can have jobs and a better future.
  • Ensuring that diverse people with disabilities are accurately portrayed in Hollywood.
  • Educating philanthropists and nonprofits about how they can include people with disabilities equally in their work. 
Fellows also will work with mentors and professional staff, strengthening skills in advocacy and leadership as well as hands-on training in public speaking, writing, social media and networking. The Fellowship enables our young leaders to gain critical skills to start their careers in public policy, media or advocacy. Alumni of the program have gone on to work at the White House, Congress, advocacy organizations, The World Bank and elsewhere.   

There are opportunities for both paid and stipend Fellowships. Paid fellows make $15 an hour and we hire eight of them each year. Stipend Fellows receive a monthly transportation stipend of $300. Lunch is provided daily for all Fellows. In addition, all Fellows participate in special presentations by guest speakers and intensive strategic communications workshops.

To apply, young leaders must fill out our online application or for more information, contact Ben Spangenberg, National Leadership Director, at BenS@RespectAbility.org or call (202) 517-6272.

Thank you for your consideration and help!


Ben Spangenberg
National Leadership Program Director


Posted by answersforteens at 2:15 PM EDT
Wednesday, 3 October 2018

Music Cares has partnered with Facing Addiction to offer cash prizes to aspiring composers. Go to:

https://www.facingaddiction.org/teens-make-music-contest for details.

This is how they phrase it:

"If you’re a musician between the ages of 14-18, you’re invited to submit an original piece of music that celebrates life above the influence or brings attention to the real-life consequences of substance abuse. 1st place winners receive tickets to the 61st Annual GRAMMY Awards® and related events! Awards also include tickets to Vans Warped Tour, cash and other prizes!."

Good luck. This is what Benjamin Franklin said: "Nothing ventured, nothing gained."

Posted by answersforteens at 5:39 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 3 October 2018 5:52 PM EDT
Monday, 3 September 2018

Trust is important and  tough  when you live with a person who suffers with addiction. You never know when you can trust that person and when not. Take a piece of paper and a pen and write down a list of when you were able to trust the parent who suffers with addiction and then make a list when you were not able to trust that parent.

Why use paper and pen in this electronic age? Because your handwriting triggers emotions, makes memory more visual.

But lets get back to trust. Is there a pattern in your list? When a parent is free of drugs he or she may have valuable input. Some may be in a  bad mood and may not have valuable input.

This is why therapy is so important. Don't have access to therapy? Visit places like Alateen and  In The Rooms. They can help. They want to listen to you and their input will help you.

Posted by answersforteens at 11:07 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, 14 September 2018 11:47 AM EDT
Wednesday, 8 August 2018
Lets gather around
Topic: Hello Again

I did think of all of you during the month of July. However, my computer would not let me add a blog. I do think there is a little man or woman inside my computer who likes to play tricks on me. The good news is it is all fixed now.

September is coming up which is recovery month for addiction. You may want to take a quick look at


The important thing is to remember that addiction is a disease. Living with someone who has this disease means three things: 

1. This is not your fault and you need to take care of yourself. Eat 3 meals a day. If need be find a healthy family with whom you can live. Do seek help. 

2. Make sure that you do not fall into the addiction trap. Remember you don't have to drink or take drugs. You may have inherited the sensitivity to addiction. 

3. If you can't afford to buy the book, For Teenagers Living With A Parent Who Abuses Alcohol/Drugs, ask your library to get the book. You have the right to a public library card and the right to ask the library to buy any book you need or to get it through another library. The book answers a lot of questions you may have and has a great resource chapter which tells you were to get help. 

You are an important person. Take good care of yourself.

Posted by answersforteens at 1:18 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, 3 September 2018 11:06 AM EDT
Wednesday, 6 June 2018
Graduating High School?

Graduation is party time. So you know what I am going to say, "You don't have to drink." In most states it is illigal to serve alcohol to anyone under the age of 21 and may result in the arrest of the adult who serves alcohol to those under the age of 21.

Let's discuss something else too. Those of you who should have but did not graduate high school still can do so. I am talking about getting a GED. Do some research - where can you go to prepare for your GED? Take a practice GED test if need be more than once before you go for your GED test. Ask for help. If your school won't guide you go online or speak to a teacher who you liked. Perhaps your public library has information. Go to your library's reference desk. Make a plan. Remember a goal without a plan is only a wish.

Posted by answersforteens at 2:06 PM EDT
Thursday, 3 May 2018
Topic: There are solutions

Just because there is addiction in your family doesn't mean that you can't have a good, healthy life. Just say, "no." Stay away from alcohol and drugs.  You also know that a teenager's mind is not completely formed just the way the rest of your body has not stopped growing. Therefore drugs/alcohol can do damage to your brain which is still developing. Pick friends who also do not want to drink or take drugs. If you are in a situation where you are offered drinks or drugs be firm.

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism has the following advice for teenagers.

Say no and let them know you mean it.

    Stand up straight.

    Make eye contact.

    Say how you feel.

    Don’t make excuses.

    Stand up for yourself.


Think through how you feel. Do you want to say, "I don't drink -period." Discuss what you might say with your other friends who don't drink.




Posted by answersforteens at 1:18 PM EDT

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