This I Believe

Allison - Dixon, California
Entered on September 15, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family
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I believe in good intentions. I believe that there are people in this world, like family, who do what is best for you.

I am eighteen years old and live with my mother and grandmother. When I was a freshman in high school I had only one real friend. I had known her since seventh grade and when I had to move to a new city and school, she talked her mother into letting her transfer. We graduated to high school together and there were so many new people. Both of us were trying to fit in and make friends, but we ended up hanging out with the wrong crowd. The people we were friends with used drugs, smoked weed, and drank alcohol. They stayed out until midnight and got into trouble.

When my mom and grandma found out what kind of people I was hanging around with, they decided to put a stop to it together. They told me that I was not to hang around with them any longer and to find some new friends—nice friends. I said I would, but when I went to school I always went right to them during lunch because I didn’t want to be alone.

One day my grandmother came to the school without me knowing and saw me hanging out with the wrong people. That afternoon at home she and my mom talked to me about it and told me to stop. They said that if I didn’t leave them, I would turn out like them. I didn’t want to be like them, but I didn’t want to be alone either. I didn’t want to get in trouble anymore either so I cut them off entirely; even when they came over to me during lunch or asked me to ditch school and go to one of their houses. I told them I couldn’t and I made up some excuse about having plans. I think they eventually caught on because after a while they left me alone. After that, I was walking to class alone, eating alone, and sitting in classes like a loner.

Then, I met this girl—who later would become my best friend—in my dance class. She was really friendly to me and asked me to eat lunch with her and her friends. I did and I made friends with them too. She and I are both starting college, something my old friends probably aren’t even attempting.

If my mom and grandma hadn’t told me to get rid of the wrong people in my life who were a bad influence on me, I don’t know where I would have ended up or who I would have become. I do know that I am grateful to them for being so hard on me and not giving up even when I yelled at them and told them I hated them. I believe that they did what was best for me and I am sure that they always will.