This I Believe

Jordan - Waucoma, Iowa
Entered on May 24, 2006
Age Group: Under 18

I have this friend. A few years ago, his dad died suddenly. It was a heart attack. No one saw it coming. Naturally, my friend was absolutely devastated. He did not know what to do. He got in with the wrong group of people and started to party all the time and do some things he shouldn’t have done. Eventually, he found himself in a juvenile detention center.

It was in October, when he got out, that I met him. We would talk on the phone all night, every night. He told me about his dad, and how horrible the past couple of years had been. He told me about the friends he had made since then, and how he regretted what he had done. We were very close for a few weeks, and in that time, he turned his life around. He stopped partying as much as he used to, and he even joined sports at school. But we grew apart and he returned to his old habits. He dropped back out of sports and started partying every night, and would go to school the next day hung over, or he would just skip it all together. One night he called a friend in tears telling her he wanted to commit suicide.

Something was wrong, and it needed to be fixed. When we talked, he would lie to me. He would not tell me what was going on, he did not want me to know how bad things had gotten. He waited a month after it happened to tell me that he dropped out of school. It was when I found out that he had started smoking and doing drugs that I decided it was time to call him on what was going on. I told him that he was throwing his life away, and he needed to stop. He needed to set his life straight again. He got mad and wouldn’t talk to me. He wouldn’t answer when I called, and he wouldn’t return my calls. But I knew telling him was the right thing, and eventually he would forgive me and consider what I had told him.

It was a week or two later when he called me. He said that I was right in telling him that, and he thanked me for caring when nobody else was there for him. He stopped partying so much and quit doing drugs. He now has a job, and works full time. He really turned his life around and made something of himself. And this time, he is not going back. It is important to always be there for your friends, through good times and bad. This I believe.