Last time I went to the movies with a group of friends, one of them stole candy from the counter. I’m not close friends with the guy who stole but I still want to hang out with the rest of the group. I don’t want to be guilty by association. What should I do?
You, and your parents, should feel proud that you are concerned about a member of your peer group stealing. This puts you in the category, in my opinion, of “good” guy or girl. Young as you are, you are recognizing a need to discern (decide) whether you want to be a part of this group.
Sadly, while the people who care about you would love to shield you from these types of people, you will encounter them all through your life. As they get older, they just go from stealing candy to stealing at work or even from friends. You get the picture.
So long as the other members of the group you hang out with don’t agree to the stealing, you’re OK to consider the kids who value honesty friends. When you’re hanging out with this group, make sure you keep your distance from this particular person and don’t spend time alone as friends.
If you’re more of a quiet, shy person and see something that shouldn’t be going on, such as stealing or bullying or lying, walk away.
If you’re more assertive and feel strong enough to do so, speak up and tell your friend to stop! Most of all, you need to tell your parents or teachers about it so that the adults in your life can help you and guide you.
Also, and this is very important, if others in the group start to go along with the bad behavior, you have to get out of this group and find new friends! Leaving old friends behind will be hard, but worth it in the end, as bad people will either treat you bad or get you in trouble. I believe in you! Stay strong!
Embrace your Personal Power with Life Coaching~
- Are these friends in the group the type of “good” people you want to associate with?
- If not, who can you count on to help you, or still be your friend, as you break away from this group?
- What will you do to stay positive, and on the right path, as you leave these old friends behind (a hard thing to do)?
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