NMS - Red Ribbon Week Essay

Red Ribbon Week Essay: Know the Real Cost
By: Marissa Gordnier - 7th Grader at Northeastern Middle School

Imagine, you're hanging out with your friends behind the school one of your friends reaches into their pocket and pulls out a pack of cigarettes. They hand one to your other friend and then offer you one. You're confused on how to approach this. You don’t want to look like a scaredy cat in front of your friends, but you also don’t know if it is safe for you. Many people have been faced with situations close to this. Sadly, students have made the poor decision and were hooked onto drugs, alcohol, or other substances. This is why we need to inform students on ways to deal with certain scenarios that they may be faced with in the future.

You are sleeping over at your friends house with a bunch of your friends; you're having fun watching movies, having pillow fights, and joking around. You go down to dinner when one of your friend’s (the host) older siblings stops you in the hallway. They ask you if you would like to smoke a cigarette with them. You're frightened of what they would do to you if you declined and what would happen to you if you accepted. This happens quite often and you shouldn’t be frightened. One way to address this situation is to politely decline and walk away. If they continue asking you, try going to a trusted adult or to the host of the slumber party and tell them. By accepting the older siblings offer you would put yourself in a terrible position risking your health and could possibly get you addicted. It is better to decline and walk away from that situation.

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