Challen Cates: Acting Success When She Didn’t Wait and Her Work Against Cyberbullying

The road to acting success hasn’t been an easy one for Challen Cates, who plays a mom on one of Nickelodeon’s biggest shows. A Virginia native and mother of two young children, Ms. Cates stopped by CYInterview to address one of the biggest things affecting children of all ages. Cates is a spokesperson for Say It 2 My Face. It’s an organization that is trying to get the word out about the negative impacts of cyberbullying. She said her biggest concern is that her children could be victims of the negative online culture.

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“Technology is changing so rapidly and it’s so different from when I was a kid or what it was just even just a few years ago. Kids are so sensitive and fragile and impressionable and to think that someone would say some something derogatory on the Internet, where it’s there forever. It’s not like the old days when someone would vandalize your locker and you could go and clean it off. This is out there forever.”

Besides the negative impact cyberbullying can have on those who are a target of it, the person doing the bully can end with legal troubles for themselves and their family, if they are a minor. Currently, various states in the U.S. have laws against cyberbullying.

“It can affect people getting jobs. If the cyberbully is underage, the parents could actually be held accountable legally. It’s a big deal.”

Challen Cates Wearing Her Say It 2 My Face Campaign Bracelet with her child Jasper

As for her work, acting hasn’t always been an easy career choice for Challen. She says she ended up being the second choice for roles in some major projects. After having her first child, she decided to quit the acting business. But, the moment she made the decision to quit, the phone started ringing and acting jobs began coming in. Ms. Cates appreciates that people think she hasn’t had enough chances to show off her acting skills. And she’s open to new projects.

“I quit because I just wanted to focus on my son at the time. Having it changed me, emotionally and your hormones change and I was very sensitive and I auditioned for a couple of things and did chemistry tests and things and it went pretty far down to me and one other person. When I found out I didn’t get them I was so hurt. I just thought, I don’t want to do this anymore. It’s not worth it. I wanted to hang out with my kid and enjoy that. Then as soon as I made that decision, then the phones started ringing and people started just offering me jobs…I welcome opportunities to grow as an actor and to experience many different types of roles.”

Ms. Cates ended our conversation by telling us what it’s been like to have a recurring role in Nickelodeon’s Big Time Rush. Each episode has averaged between three and five million viewers. Perhaps, this role – on a major cable network program – will bring other opportunities for her.

“It’s a blast to work on the show. It’s so much fun to go to work. I love the cast and the crew. Scott Fellows, who created the show, he has his hand in every episode. He has a great, creative comedic mind. He comes up with wonderful stuff for us to do in every episode and it’s so much fun. I’ve really enjoyed my time with the show and I’m looking forward to more episodes. But I think there’s still other things out there for me as well.”

You can find out more about the Say It 2 My Face Campaign and how to get involved at http://www.sayit2myface.org/

Challen Cates’s official website is at http://challencates.com/