Does anger alter the ability to correctly remember the truth?

CHICAGO—Teen angst seems to be a required part of growing up, and the hurt that accompanies it rarely leaves anyone untouched. The pains suffered are often the result of decisions made during these awkward years. A misguided understanding of the world causes a teen’s personal view of life to be distorted and somewhat selfish. Teens often internalize insults and replay them in their heads so often that their perception of the truth begins to vary, and a false reality is created. Feeling invincible, their grasp of the situation at hand begins to falter, and in some instances, their reactions become careless. Sometimes a clumsy effort to right a wrong may go awry, and the situation takes a serious turn.

Reality Checked: Life Through Death (ISBN 0-978-0-9764981-0-0, TurnKey Press, 2005, $19.95) by author and youth leader Victor Waller, takes us into the lives of Catherine Brown and her family, who fall victim to the rash actions of a friend turned enemy. This troubled teen is resentful due to offenses he believes were carried out against him by society, and he takes out his frustration on members of Catherine’s family. In one night, he takes the lives of Catherine’s father, uncle and sister, leaving Catherine alone with a bitter taste for revenge. It is Catherine, however, who is wrongly accused and imprisoned for the murder of her father, and for 30 years she must wait for the revenge she so desperately desires.

As a guest, Victor Waller can discuss:

How to help your teen effectively handle tough life decisions;

How to accept blame for personal wrongdoings;

How to teach your teen to avoid internalizing every offense; and

How to really talk to your teen about the ways of the world.

Victor Waller has spent his life working with young people who have come face-to-face with some of life’s toughest decisions. He earned his master’s in divinity and master’s in secondary education from Andrews University and was a teacher and administrator in public and private schools. Now serving as a lay pastor, Victor Waller resides in Rockford, Ill., with his wife. In addition to working with kids and young adults, he also enjoys gospel music, poetry and writing screenplays.

From the May 11-17, 2005, issue

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