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Christianity --Youth Issues/Friendship with different values

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Question
Hello! My name is Jenna and I am 18 year old girl who's lost and needs your help. I have a friend who I've known since third grade. We have been extremely close and she's basically like a sister to me though. Starting senior year of high school I've noticed a lot of changes in her which have made me question if I want to stay friends with her. She has been doing things that I don't approve of including talking to middle age men and meeting up with them and she tells me that sex is ok before marriage and it doesn't matter who with. We are both in college now and she's still doing these things that worry me and make me uncomfortable. I just found out today she's in a hotel room with some guy she probably met online. Even though she's 18, I still don't think she should be talking to 30 year olds and especially possibly having sex. At this point, I've been getting angry and very worried and I'm too the point I'm tired of worrying about her. I don't know whether or not I should be friends with her. Our viewpoints on religion are completely different. I'm a firm believer in God and try to do everything to stay faithful to him and love him, while she does not at all agree and has actually mocked me for believing in him. I just don't know what to do anymore. I really do love her like a sister but I can't handle the fact are values are completely different. I would love to get your advice on this issue. God Bless:)

Answer
Jenna-

You sound like the kid of friend that I would like.  Sometimes being Christian means not saying anything, and just acting Christian.  If you've told her why you believe in God, and why you're not comfortable with her life style, both from a Christian and secular standpoint, you can do no more.  It's obvious that if she has mocked you for believing in God, it's time to move on.  Just tell her one last time that you're not comfortable with her life style, and that you can no longer be friends. Tell her you love her and always will, and that you would still like to be her friend, but that she has got to start taking care of herself.  Sleeping around, even meeting around, with 30 somethings at her age is dangerous and could mess her up for life.  I can tell you, that if she's meeting with older guys, the ONLY thing they're interested in is sex.  PERIOD.  You are right in believing that's wrong.  Sex is NOT okay before marriage.  Stick to your values.  I know you want to worry about her - instead of worrying, pray, and hand it over to God.  Don't make yourself sick over it - that's harmful to you, too.  Start developing some new friends with your values.  While it's okay to talk about other people's values, sometimes God puts you in positions so that YOU are the good influence.  When your friend starts to be a bad influence on you (not in your behavior but in your health, both mental and physical), it's time for you to move on.  She may come back, but I doubt it will be soon.  It will take her time to realize that meaningless sex is, well, meaningless.  Be open to her coming back, but don't pursue it.  Go have your fun with your own values.  Jesus Christ rocks!  I have my most fun when I'm with other Christians.  Try joining a campus ministry - you'll find better friends there.

Hope this helps.  Feel free to follow up, and please check back with me and let me know how things are going.

Hugs,
Carl

Christianity --Youth Issues

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Carl F.

Expertise

I can answer questions from teens & young adults concerning their faith walk and on social issues which affect their lives. I can answer questions on sex, homosexuality, or drugs, and anything else that might be troubling you. After 30 years in youth ministry, nothing shocks me, and I promise to give straight answers to any and all questions. I can also answer questions from youth workers on problems they`re having with programming or with their groups.

Experience

I have been involved in youth and young adult ministries as a volunteer for over 35 years. I am currently a volunteer youth minister in a suburban UM church - I have a small group of 7th and 8th graders.

Organizations
United Methodist Church, Chrysalis, Walk to Emmaus, Cursillo

Education/Credentials
Several training seminars, 9 years at National Youth Workers Convention, 1 year at Princeton Forum on Youth Ministry

Awards and Honors
Certified lay speaker for UM Church

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