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Internet Friends

Recently a teen from Massachusetts was looking for friends online. Her bio said that she was lonely and looking for love. She arranged to meet someone that she met in a chat room. She was picked up from work, handcuffed, and tortured until she finally was able to call the police. Her friends described her as shy and timid. She had run away from home before saying that she felt lost.

It really makes you stop and think about situations we put ourselves in. You wouldn't get into a car with a stranger or let someone you didn't know into your house or apartment. Why then, do so many people let random individuals from the internet - who they have never even seen - into their lives?

If you are lonely or bored, surfin' the net can give you something to do. But you have to really be careful about certain things. Check these out.

  • Never use your real name.
  • Keep your profile simple, don't include your address or town.
  • Never give out your phone number.
  • If you feel scared or threatened, tell an adult or the police.
  • Don't ever arrange to meet someone you met online.
  • Use common sense in chat rooms or sites that you go to.
  • Always remember, anybody could be lying about anything.

Everyone gets lonely or bored now and then. It can seem like everyone else's life is so exciting. But before you use the internet to spice your life up, look around at what's available in your real world. Find a book to read, volunteer somewhere, take a walk, start a journal or clean your room (I know that's pushin' it.) Just do something that will help make you a better person in the long run.

Don't get me wrong. The internet is huge. You have access to information 24/7, you have access to people all day and night. Just remember that you have to be responsible and make good decisions online, just as you do offline.

Treat the people that you "meet" online like the strangers that they are. You really don't know them. Think about what it's like for you when you are meeting someone for the first time face to face. You might check out what they look like, see who they know... you get the picture. Online, it's hard to do, people may lie about what they look like, how old they are and where they live. Sure there are those stories of people meeting and falling in love or becoming best friends but there are even more horrifying tales like the teen from Massachusetts. Why take the chance?

Have fun and explore but be smart. Protect yourself from whack people. Use your common sense.

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161 Comments

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Dear Dish-It in the forums

Alexis7343
Alexis7343 posted in Friends:
Yes, both online and in person. It sucks when they say i did it its just they bullied me and I got back at them just 10x harder! I'm a nice person but I can be a real stuck up B!^** if you wanna mess with me. If I get back at you your gonna get it bad.
reply 1 minute
GlimmeringSky16
Not really throughout my life but I guess since bullying is repeated teasing, once in fifth grade these kids made up the joke that my name(Su for those you that don't know) stood for StupidUgly, which I mean wasn't THAT bad but I was like what, 10 xD I mean I let it roll off but did end up crying in the shower once. My mom caught me and made me explain everything and made it better. So really, instead of hiding it I recommend talking to an adult about it if you're ever bullied, even tho keeping it a secret may seem like a good idea.  Ever since then I've never been bullied. I'm thankful fo that c;
reply about 1 hour
ha1l13
ha1l13 posted in Friends:
YEs I have been bullied. A lot. People who I think are my friends are back stabbers. They suddenly just like turn on me. I've had rumoursspread about me and I was so sad. I hated being bullied. But the best thing to do if you are being bullied is to hold your head high and not cry. Because if you show a single tear that is what the bully wants And it will take you as an easy target and will bully you more and more and more and more. And bullies won't stop until you stand up to them.
reply about 1 hour
insanity_ws
insanity_ws posted in Friends:
I've been bullied and teased before. Honesty a bullies opinion means no more than anyone else's opinion does so pay them no mind.
reply about 2 hours
DisneyanimeLover
I've been bullied. I've been teased. But, you really shouldn't pay attention to bullies. If you compare them to everybody I'm the world, they're one tiny thing, so why should their opinion matter?
reply about 4 hours

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