Bullying is a type of abuse that generally occurs amongst peers. It can happen in person, online or through texting. It involves one person or a group of people targeting an individual because you may be different or they may be jealous of you. Their negative actions or behavior is intended to make you feel bad and to isolate you from a group. Most schools now have policies in place to address bullying and there is a lot of information available online to help you know what to do if you are being bullied. Alternatively you can talk to one of our youth workers who can help you find some strategies to deal with the bullies.
It is not legal for a young person to drink alcohol until they are 18, however there can be a lot of pressure from other people to start drinking at an earlier age. Whilst it may seem fun and make you feel more confident, alcohol can have a significant impact on how your brain develops during your teenage years, as well as other negative impacts on your internal organs. If you or a friend believes that you/they are already starting to become reliant on alcohol then we recommend you talk to a health professional or one of our youth workers, as it may continue to have a negative impact on the rest of your life.
Use of any kind of illicit drug such as cannabis, cocaine, ecstasy, speed, heroin etc is illegal, no matter what your age. Many of your friends may already be experimenting with some form of drug and may be putting pressure on you to do the same. Any form of drug use will have a significant impact on your brain development as well as impact on other areas of your health; it can also lead to long term mental health issues. If you are caught in possession of drugs by the police, you could end up in court, even in jail and potentially have a criminal record that could impact any future employment prospects and limit places in the world you are allowed to travel to. Please think carefully before choosing to use any type of drug.
If you are concerned about your own use or that of a friend, contact one of our youth workers who can help you or your friend find the right support.