Recently, I was invited to a house warming by some friends. The first house I went to I brought Pepsi and chips. It was very awkward because everyone brought alcohol and I didn’t. It didn’t bother me nor did I judge those who brought alcohol. As soon as I made myself comfortable it wasn’t long until alcohol was offered to me. I politely answered, “No thanks, I don’t drink”. During the night, while conversing with different people, the offers for alcohol didn’t stop nor did my reply differ.
Then surprisingly one guy approached me and told me how he admires people who don’t drink. It was then I asked myself, why do people drink? Why others smoke and take drugs while others don’t? Better yet, why do we do what others do?
During my high school years I end up doing a lot of things I didn’t like. Why, so I could just easily fit in with others? I wanted to be cool, be liked and make as many friends as I could. I didn’t want to be that anti-social Christian guy (if you know what I mean).
Do we drink, smoke, or even take drugs so we can just receive friend’s approval? Do we do it out of fear, thinking they may not like us, or don’t want to hang out with us? Do we do it because “everyone else is doing it”?
I tried smoking but after coughing I vowed to never do it again. I had marijuana inAmsterdambut after experiencing the side effects I vowed that it would be my first and last time. As for alcohol I have tasted a few and experienced drunkenness but I never get into the habit of drinking or have never appealed to me and it’s something that don’t interest me at all. Those are the reasons, not because I’m a Christian.
But ask yourself this… do you do it because you feel pressured? Have you tried saying No? I always used to care what others thought of me until I realized that it’s not good for me.
I have nothing against smokers and drinkers. I want my friends and the people I meet to like me for just being myself. I don’t need to do what they do to fit in because I can give them something much better, my friendship. I’m not trying to be different. I am different!
Don’t compromise your values and your own beliefs. Don’t be afraid to say, No. You don’t have to do what others are doing, just to fit in or be like. If they like you as a friend, or as a person, then the rest doesn’t really matter. I’m in no position to tell you how to live your life. I made a lot of mistakes doing things I didn’t like just to fit in. Stand up for what you believe in. If you give in, it’s not the end.
Following what others do is not a healthy way to live. There will come a time in your life, when you will just have to be you. When it comes to friendship we all bring different traits and personalities to the group, will you bring yours?