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I have a friend who gets me into trouble a lot. I donít want to just stop being his friend.Comments(0)
I have a friend who gets me into trouble a lot. He got me into trouble at work because he was goofing off and brought me into it. Iím kind of tired of this, but heís been a friend for a while and has a hard life, so I donít want to just stop being his friend.óFriend Problems, 17.
Dear Friend Problems,
I had a friend similar to this when I was 19. His name was Robert. Robert and I worked together at a pallet repair factory. He was the shift manager, and I was part of the assembly line. Robert was funny and creative, and he always gave me pretty good shifts. The problem was that Robert was extremely out of control when the boss was not there. He would try to cut things with the band saw, shoot pigeons with the nail guns, and was always crushing things with the forklifts. Sometimes he got the entire line in trouble because of some dumb prank. Lots of people didn’t like him, but I was his friend.
One day I asked Robert for a ride home after a 12-hour shift together. He had been having a bad day because of some baby mama drama. Whenever he was like this, he would be especially goofy, and the day had been particularly edgy.
“No problem, dude,” he said. So we got into his car and started out.
To get to my house, you had to hit a stretch of highway. As we entered the on-ramp Robert pulled out a 40-ounce bottle of beer and opened it with both hands.
“You want some?” He looked over at me and shoved the bottle in my direction.
“You’re serious?” I replied.
Robert looked over at me and smiled. As he chugged the beer he accelerated to 110 miles per hour.
I clicked on my seat belt and asked him, “What’s wrong with you?” I was uncomfortable with every part of this scenario, and I wanted him to know. “You need to put the bottle away, man. We are in traffic.”
“Dude, relax. I’m good.”
“I’m not. If you get pulled over, I go to jail too. I’m trying to get into school, man. I can’t get arrested right now. You need to stop.”
“Bro, calm down. I got this.”
The conversation continued like this the whole ride, which took about half the time it usually did. Robert never really slowed down or stopped drinking.
Reaching home, I got out of the car, slammed the door, and walked away. Robert and I stopped hanging out after that. A little while later he got fired from his job.
Proverbs 10:10 says: “He who winks with the eye causes trouble, but a prating fool will fall.” Solomon says a little later, “As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend” (Proverbs 27:17). I don’t think you should forsake your friend, but I do think you need to forsake his foolishness. Linking your character with his will continue to get you into trouble. Eventually your reputation could get damaged. Sit down and explain that you would like to continue to hang out, but that you won’t do it at the cost of your character. Try to help him see how he damages his own chances when he practices foolishness. It may really help him to have someone get him focused. If worse comes to worse and things don’t change, simply do your best to be a friend where you can be. Don’t participate in the foolishness, but don’t avoid opportunities to be friendly.
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