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how do you know if a friend is a bad influence?

my friend is a jehovah witness and keeps on telling me that gays are bad people. i dont know what to do.

Re: how do you know if a friend is a bad influence?

Hey kate lovatic, 

 

Welcome to ReachOut.com. It can be a bit of a pickle when you're starting to feel that a friend may not have a postive influence on you. It can be fairly challenging because you're not sure whether to speak up and potentially hurt their feelings or calling out on their behaviour, particularly if it's not appropriate.  I also had a friend who was rather conversative and had the same view on people and their sexuality. At the time, there were people at my school who identified as gay and they would go around telling them how "wrong" it was to be gay Smiley Mad Needless to say, we're not friends anymore. 

 

Have you spoken to them about it? If you're feeling like they're imposing their opinions onto you and being pushy, that is definitely not ok. It's important that people can express their views in a civil manner as well as being able to listen and to understand where they are coming from. Being comfortable about expressing your views, not being afraid of judgement and being respectful towards one another are other factors to consider too. 

 

You could check out these factsheets on what is a bad friendshipconflict with friends and having a hard time with friends for more info. 

 

Let us know how you go!

 

Hope this helps and take care~

___________________________________________________
Stay excellent

Re: how do you know if a friend is a bad influence?

Hey kate, welcome to RO Smiley Happy

Seems like a tough situation. You have to be careful - this is your friend, and I'm assuming they're someone you want to keep around. At the same time, your friend's views may end up hurting someone in the future, and it's important to at least try to reason with him/her. Let your friend know that, while those ideas may be seen as ok in a religious context, it's not ok to treat people in a disrespectful manner - gay people are not 'bad people', they're just 'people', and it's not right to treat them as less because of something that they simply have no control over.

 

This will probably be difficult - personally, I've found that people who have issues with other people's sexuality tend to not change their views very easily. But the best you can do is let your friend know that, if he/she wants to continue the friendship, you won't tolerate disrespectful attitudes toward other people.

 

I hope everything works out! Let us know how it goes.

Dan