20 November 2014
For many of us, our friends are the people we see every day. The people we talk to first thing in the morning or text last thing at night, the ones we have fun with, go out with and grow up with. So if you have a friend that you think is going down the wrong path, getting in with the wrong crowd or has started acting strangely after meeting someone new either online or in life, it can be really upsetting and worrying.
Like most people, you’ll want to do everything you can to stop your friend coming to any harm, but it can be difficult to know where to start or what to do to make the situation better.
What kinds of problems do people face?
There are all different sorts of problems that young people face as they grow up, drinking, taking drugs but just as dangerous is being groomed by an older person or taken advantage of in another way. And, as our last blog mentioned, it’s not just young girls that this happens to, boys can be groomed online too.
Though seeing a friend go down a dangerous path is really hard, the faster you act, the more chance you have of really making a difference. Luckily, you’re not alone, and there are lots of groups, organisations and individuals out there who are just waiting to help.
Talk to someone
If you think you’re the only one that knows your friend is putting themselves in danger then it can be a big burden. To make it easier for yourself, find someone you really trust like a teacher, relative or friend and talk to them.
Whether it’s an adult or someone your own age, having someone to talk to can really take the pressure off and make it easier to come up with a plan of action.
Get in touch with a specialist organisation
There are lots of organisations out there like the Rose Project that are dedicated to helping young people. Get in touch on 0808 800 1037 for free and confidential support if you’d like to chat to someone about concerns you have about you or a friend.
We have years of experience helping people in need so there’s no need to be embarrassed or worried about talking to us.
Try not to get drawn in yourself
If your friend is hanging around with ‘wrong crowd’, getting into drink or drugs or getting attention from an older man, it might seem a bit exciting at first and it can be tempting to go along with them to try and keep them safe.
However, it’s really easy to get drawn into the wrong lifestyle, so make sure you keep yourself safe as you try to help your friend get back on the right path.
No one wants to see someone they care about put themselves in harm’s way so make sure you get yourself and your friend the support you need and help them make the most of their life.