My best friend has recently started drinking, trying drugs, etc. He's been getting college students to supply him with them. We're both 17, and I'm getting worried about him. He's started saying things like "I just want to go home and get drunk," and "After all the stress at school, I like the feeling of not being in control." He's admitted that he had planned to show up to Homecoming tipsy, if he could get a ride, but has changed that plan since the school threatened to bring breathalyzers. He told me today that he was considering trying acid.
He says that at the moment, there's a giant sense of novelty, that it may be making the alcohol and drugs seem better. He's also admitted that the alcohol really makes him feel like crap.
The good news is that at the moment, he's being pretty smart about it. He hasn't been driving drunk or high, and even his plans for coming to homecoming tipsy were based on whether or not he could get a ride. He's doing tons of research before trying anything new to see what sorts of crappy side effects he'd be dealing with and whether or not it will be worth it to try it. He's only doing new drugs around people who are familiar with the drugs, to make sure he doesn't do anything to hurt himself or someone else.
Still, I'm a worrier and I'm nervous about this.
He's also come out of the closet recently. He got some push-back when he came out to his parents; they were pissed off, he drew away from us, etc. He's also generally pissed off at the world, thanks to supposed friends who are being hypocrites, claiming nothing's different about him now that he came out, yet still adamantly arguing against gay rights. That started a few weeks ago, he started drinking and experimenting this weekend or the weekend before, but had tried drinking a couple years earlier. Could he be trying to escape reality? Is this something to be seriously worried about?
So basically, when do I need to involve adults? When do I need to let a parent or teacher or school therapist or guidance counselor know that he's doing this? I don't want to do it until absolutely necessary: This is the sort of thing that could get him expelled. At the same time, I don't want to wait until it's too late for him to be helped. I've already let him know that if, god forbid, anything does go wrong, he can call me, regardless of what's going on. I'm trying to stay out of it as much as possible, besides letting him know that I'm there if something goes wrong, and letting him rant to me.
Any advice? Thank you very much. :\
Most Helpful Guy
At first I was going to suggest that like many 17 year old's he is going through an experimental phase and it probably isn't that worrisome as long as he is doing things responsibly and stays away from hard drugs (heroin, meth etc). However, the fact that he has just come out and has probably experienced some emotional trauma as a result makes me think he might be at risk for developing into a drug user who is taking them to escape a reality that is painful to him. He could get addicted to that feeling of losing control because it allows him to avoid the pain of his parents and friends judging him for being who he is. So firstly, I would suggest he seek counselling on the issue of coming out regardless of whether his drug use becomes a problem or not. Secondly, reassure him that you are someone who does care and is looking out for him and will listen.