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My friend is chewing tobacco!

 

There is this guy in my class who is kind of a friend. We text sometimes and earlier this week I heard he chews tobacco. I asked him if he did and he told me that he chewed because he was so depressed and stressed out.


I told him it wasn't the right thing to do. I'm really worried about him even though he says he's quitting. I don't know what to do. He said there is nothing anyone can do to help him and that I should just stop worrying. He told me I'm wasting my time. I really do care about him and don't want him to hurt himself, but I don't know what to do. HELP!


Hey girl,

It’s never easy to just ignore a problem like this. Chewing tobacco seriously affects his health, so of course you care. What are some ways to handle this sitch?

 
Show that you care

Try talking to your friend yourself. Have a little one-on-one or write it out in a letter. Let him know that you care about him and are concerned about his health and well-being. Include some scary stats about the gross side effects that chewing tobacco can have (like cancer!). Tell him that you're always here to talk if he feels upset or depressed. Do something fun to take his mind off of things—like going out for a cup of hot chocolate or joining a new after-school activity. Spending time with your bud will show him that you care and boost his self-esteem.


Get outside help

If you tried to cheer him up but he's still chewing tobacco and seems down, you could always tell an adult you trust. Whether it’s a parent or teacher, bring it up to someone who will listen to your concerns. That adult might not be able to completely control the sitch, but he/she will have the best information or advice on how to talk to him and get help.

 

Continue to look after your friend regardless of what he does. Don’t push him away by constantly bugging him, just show him that you care. Try talking to him so that he can let his stress out a healthier way.

 
One little act of caring can go a long way. Keep being kind!
 
-Jean Lee
 

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POSTED ON 12/1/2009 7:00:00 AM

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