DEAR READERS: Lots of responses recently to columns. Thank you all for taking the time to write me and comment on Teen Talk. I appreciate each of your letters and enjoy hearing other viewpoints:
DEAR KELLY: I just read your answer concerning SL's questioning of faith. Your article was very, very good. As a person of faith, you were balanced in your approach, fortifying in your advice to not turn away from God, and validating your questioner's feelings. It was very nice to see you turn them toward their faith.
HI, KELLY: I usually read Teen Talk even though I have no kids and was a teen 40 years ago.
I have to tell you that your column (about faith) was awesome. Everyone says that the media is anti-religion and secular. Your answer to that teen was perfect.
You are so right. Life is hard. Praying doesn't mean everything gets orchestrated your way. Getting through life – the good and the bad – is best when you share your life with others. Thank you for giving such a wonderful and caring answer. I hope lots of teens read it and take it to heart.
MRS. RICHARDSON: As an eighth-grade teacher, I can't thank you enough for your response to High School Freshman. I think it applies to eighth-grade students as well. They need to hear what it takes for success in school. You are 100 percent right – organization is the key. I will be posting your article in my class and referring to it all year.
DEAR KELLY: Thank you so much for writing about teenage suicide. This conversation needs to occur way more than it does. It is a serious issue with teens these days. I deal with it weekly, sometimes daily in my position as a high school counselor.
DEAR KELLY: Bravo on the article (about teen suicides). Our town of El Dorado Hills so needed your article. You wrote that so nicely that hopefully the teens and the parents can learn.
DEAR KELLY: Thank you for your thoughtful, informative, and compassionate article about suicide. The article was great because it balanced accurate, educational content for the benefit of the readers with the hard subject matter of suicide loss and teen suicide, without sensationalizing the issue. And you also offered the national suicide prevention crisis lifeline number – (800) 784-2433 – for which we provide service.
You may also want to use American Association of Suicidology for suicide data – www.suicidology.org, a terrific site for expert information on suicide. You can also feel free to look at our website – www.theeffort.org for additional information on suicide and local and regional services.
– Liseanne Wick, program manager, Suicide Prevention and Crisis Services
DEAR KELLY: I'm not writing you for advice because you already gave me some. I'm writing you to thank you for helping me through a weight problem.
I wrote you about five months ago asking for advice with a weight problem I had. My signature was "Skinny Before Summer." My goal was to lose 10-15 pounds before July. And guess what? I did!
I talked to my mom and doctor about this and they both agreed that I should lose some weight. My mom, who had lost weight before, gave me many tips along the way. And you helped me get started.
Your idea of the vision board was great. I put tips, inspirational quotes, pictures of bathing suits, and smack in the middle of the board, I put your response to me which helped me get started with all this.
I have also been exercising much more. You and my doctor both suggested at least 30 minutes per day. I have been riding my bike everywhere possible and I have been lifting 6-pound weights at home.
I also started keeping a food journal, like you suggested, to show me exactly how much I was eating. I occasionally had sweets but mostly stayed in the healthy zone.
I'd just really like to thank you for showing me really great tips and and ideas. I'm now really confident and losing all this weight really changed my life.
– Healthy at Summer