Jane Fonda Helps Teen Sort Out Adolescence
By: Marianne Schnall
Jane Fonda is well known as an Oscar- and Emmy-award winning actress and for her best-selling books and exercise videos, as well as for her activism around a variety of issues, such as co-founding the Women’s Media Center. What you may not know, is that Fonda also has a long and varied history of working with children and teenagers. Back in 1977, Fonda and her former husband Tom Hayden started the Laurel Springs Performing Arts Children’s Camp that served disadvantaged children for fifteen years, and she also founded several non-profits and initiatives that specifically serve adolescents, including founding the Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Power & Potential (GCAPP) in 1995 and the Jane Fonda Center for Adolescent Reproductive Health at Emory School of Medicine in 2000. Helping teens has been a longtime passion, and learning about their needs, problems and questions compelled her to write her comprehensive new book, Being a Teen: Everything Teen Girls & Boys Should Know About Relationships, Sex, Love, Health, Identity & Morefor which she consulted with a variety of additional resources and experts.
Fonda says these “challenging” teenage years are especially critical for our overall development because, “it’s when the stage is set for who you become as an adult. It is the gateway to adulthood.” With directness and clarity, Fonda provides detailed information and helpful guidance on many sensitive topics that parents and teens frequently have a difficult time talking about, ranging from how their bodies work, to sexuality, how to be authentic and discover their identity, challenges like bullying, eating disorders, and sexual abuse, what constitutes healthy relationships and much more. This book, which takes on modern day issues that impact today’s teens, including social media, cyber bullying and sexting, is an invaluable and timely tool for parents, educators and teens themselves.
I recently talked with Fonda about her inspiration to write Being a Teen, the advice she wishes she had received as both teenager and parent, and her hopes for this book and for teens today.
To read the entire interview go here: Huffington Post