SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Lifestyle

November 16, 2013

Dear Abby: Teenager’s marijuana use puts friend in tough spot

Dear Abby: I’m a senior in high school. Every day during lunch, one of my friends goes outside and smokes weed with a couple of his friends. He comes back from lunch with red eyes, smelling of smoke and his behavior indicates that he’s high. I’m not sure if they smoke on or off campus, but I know it isn’t legal at their age (17), and especially not at school. I saw a joint in his pocket a couple of times and he told me to keep it a secret.

Abby, this has me very uncomfortable. If he wants me to keep it a secret, he must know it’s wrong. I don’t know how to tell someone or even who I should tell. I know he has depression and weed can “take the edge off,” but that doesn’t make it OK.

What should I do? Should I tell anyone? And if so, who and how?

Fretting In Washington State

Dear Fretting: It’s surprising to me that your friend returns from lunch showing all of the signs of being stoned, and none of his teachers have picked up on it. Haven’t his grades suffered?

While it is not uncommon for people who are depressed to try to self-medicate with illegal substances, it’s not nearly as successful as dealing with their emotions by talking about them with a medical professional, and can sometimes make the problem worse. The person to confide this in would be a trusted teacher or school counselor. Please don’t wait.

Dear Abby: While volunteering last year with a moms’ group, I met a woman I’ll call “Beverly.” We worked on a project together and that was the last I saw of her.

I heard she recently lost her daughter in a terrible accident. Our group rallied around her to provide meals for her family. At that time I asked the volunteer chairwoman about taking a meal to Beverly. The chairwoman didn’t respond until a couple of weeks later. Now I’m wondering if I should still take a meal over there.

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