Drugs and alcohol
Does your friend have a problem with drugs or alcohol?
When someone is drinking too much or taking drugs, there is often a deeper problem going on. Your friend could be upset about something and the drugs or alcohol will only be making it worse. It's lucky for them that they have such a good friend as you who obviously wants to help.
Your friend might be:
- unhappy at home
- feeling anxious or depressed about something
- being pressurised by other people or experiencing bullying at school
- feeling insecure and wanting to show off to people
Drugs and alcohol can be tricky to talk about but you must try. Sometimes people who are having a problem with them are sensitive about it. You should:
- show understanding
- give moral support
- keep them upbeat
What can you do?
Don't feel you have to sort your friend's problems out on your own. Encourage him or her to:
- talk to a parent or another responsible adult
- talk to a teacher at school, or maybe your Safer Schools Officer
- contact ChildLine on 0800 1111 in confidence to talk to a professional who can offer help and advice
Of course, they might not feel they can talk about their problem so if that's the case you should speak up on their behalf.
And remember if you're worried they might get into trouble, it's far better getting into a bit of trouble now than allowing drugs or alcohol to become a bigger problem in their lives and it becoming a much more serious situation later.
You should also encourage your friend to find out more about the type of drug they are getting involved with. Take a look at the Talk to Frank website.