Issue No. 4 - December, 2008

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What Is Friendship & Why Do You Need It?

By Mike Lafreniere

Why do we all truly feel we need friends in life? Is it because we feel so incomplete without them? Is it because we need someone to talk to and confide in? The truth is, every person looks for a true best friend and friendship in general to feel wanted. Also, because without them, life can seem and be more difficult then it actually is or has to be.

Friends are the persons we want to be there for when we need someone to talk to or a shoulder to cry on. Someone to either hang out with after school, or a person to confide in and be able to trust no matter the condition or what the situation at hand is. Friends are something every person needs in life. If you cannot trust your friends, then are they really your friends? Are they special enough for you to consider them your "friends.” I believe if someone calls you their "friend" then you should feel special. This is a big thing to me. Since "friends" is something you do need in life, sometimes it is what keeps a person sane. Without friendship and friends life would be very boring, not having that friend to call up to go to the mall and watch the boys, or to be your date at the school dance when nobody else will be.

A friend is someone who is not ashamed to be seen with you in public. They are proud to call you a friend and cherish the friendship to the end. Many of us also live life with friends we like to call our "best friends".

What is a best friend exactly? A friend who you think is the best? That special person or those special people who are always there for you? The people you put the most trust in and want to be with the most? Best friends, to most people are the ones that are THE TRUE friends and no matter what the situation is, no matter what you do (within limits) they are right there standing by your side. A best friend should be a person who will help you when your upset, even if it's at them, they will try and make you laugh when your feeling down. They will overall just sit and listen to you in any time of need. A best friend is more likely a friend, just one you feel that much closer to, or a person you just truly trust; more then any of your regular friends. Best friends overall, are just the people you like most, or trust most. Many people go through life without a "best friend". Without that special person to confide in, or that person to call up when you think you finally fell "in love."

I believe, without a best friend, that time in life would not be very enjoyable. So many people feel left out, or that nobody cares about them, when most of the time, there is that person who sits down everyday and watches you; who just wishes they could walk up to you and say "hello". This person sits down everyday and just wants to be your friend because they either themselves have no true friends or just want to be yours. Everyone has a best friend, some do not know it, some do not want to face this fact, and some just don't believe it. I truly believe no matter who you are, whether you are black, white, purple, pink, blue, Jewish, English, French, Catholic, or any other religion or race, that you do have a best friend, you just may not know it yet. Overall, friendship is something many of us take advantage of and don't realize how important and special it is to us until it is gone; or until we talk to people who believe they have none at all. If you take advantage of your friendship with a person, do you truly deserve to be their friend? Think about it!

Why Should You Be Keeping A Journal?

By Laura Jean

As you know, many, many teens from all around the world write in to HelpingTeens (formally known as TeenHelp) and ask for the help and guidance that they need. Being on staff for over 6 months, I have seen a lot of help requests. They vary from depression, suicide, sexual issues, family problems, friend issues, etc. There is one piece of advice that I have found very useful in replying to at least ONE request every day: TRY KEEPING A JOURNAL. I know that a lot of people thing that writing in a journal is just for GIRLS, or poetic people, or things like that. But journal writing can be a helpful and releasing experience. There are tons of different kinds of journals. Personally, I have an English journal (a requirement at my school), a personal journal, and a few journals with my friends. And they help me get things off of my mind that bother me. Some people write in and say they have so much going on in their life with family, school, friends, and any other sort of problem someone might have. A lot of times people say that they want to say something, or talk to someone, but they can't because they don't feel comfortable. Well, they can tell someone! They can let it out in a journal. A journal is where you can just let everything out and put it all on paper however you feel and you have the security of knowing you can get it out of your system without anyone else knowing. (that is, unless you CHOOSE to show them your journal). Now that we have cleared up the fact that journals CAN be useful to EVERYONE. A journal is a journal let's leave it at that. But everyone has their own way of letting their feelings come out.
Here is a list of how some people express themselves in a journal or journals:

  • Just writing in their own words how their day went and anything that is on their mind.
  • Writing a story, not necessarily with them in it, but about someone in a situation like their own.
  • Poetry
  • Drawing
  • Word art. Writing a word with a picture. Examples include: if you were in a really good mood, maybe write the word happy in a bubbly kind of letters, or if you were very sad or upset shape the letters of the word LOST (or something) in the shape of teardrops.
  • Let the words go onto the paper as they come out of your mind. They don't even have to make sense, or be in like sentences or paragraphs. However you feel works.
  • Write a letter to someone that you will NEVER have to send.

Those are just a few and I have to admit, I have used each one of them at least once! They just help to let out what you are feeling is building up inside of you and you can let them out without telling the world something personal.

Journal Sites (They allow you to keep a journal online)

Abuse: It’s Real

By Casper

The definition of abuse shines over many, many situations. Ranging from, "To use wrongly or improperly," to, "to treat in a harmful, injurious, or offensive way." Abuse is given, and taken by many people, every single day. A lot of these abuses happen when people are dating someone that they love, and it doesn't just happen in straight couples, but in gay and lesbian couples as well. It doesn't matter who you are, how rich or poor you are, or how long you've know the person. It's a real problem.

According to

  • About one in 11 teens reports being a victim of physical dating abuse each year.
  • About one in four teens reports verbal, physical, emotional, or sexual abuse.
  • About one in five teens reports being a victim of emotional abuse.
  • About one in five high school girls has been physically or sexually abused by a dating partner

These are just a few of the statistics that plague our lives, if you're interested in reading more, go to the address above.

As we all know, there are circumstances of abuse all over our world. They happen each and every single day, and when it happens, it will ruin someone's view of themselves, other people, or even their life as a whole. Abusers need to think before they act, and victims need to realize the signs when enough is enough, and get help, which you so justly deserve.

If you feel you're being abused, tell a trusted adult, or tell a friend you trust, parents, or whomever. Don't let it keep going because the longer it goes, the more and more you lose yourself. They can help you.

If you don't think you can talk to a person face to face, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline. 1-800-799-SAFE (7233), website:

Save yourself before you lose yourself. Get help.

Sometimes goodbye is a second chance: A memoir

By Dalia (CausticTears)

You always hear that trickling phrase, "Life is short." Or, "Live for today." I used to think what a bunch of bullshit. I'm 22, life is not short for me. Yeah, or is it really short? A friend of mine recently passed away at the age of 22. Tell me how this happens?

Tell me how someone so vibrant and loved just dies? My friend used to be a member of this site, as well. Her name was Kristen aka IM so tOrmenteD. Actually, I met her through this site. I was sixteen, drinking beers, and severely depressed. I met Kristen in the chat room that night and her calm words and our in depth conversations built into a great friendship. A friendship in which we would call love. She was my first love.

Our conversations consisted of anything and everything. I remember we even talked about what animals we would be if able. We both agreed on monkeys. After hearing of her passing, I quickly rummaged through our online journals to just find what comments she had left me. One being: "You are my world, please don't take that away from me." I couldn't help but think, even though our love changed into a friendship... my world was taken away. So quickly. I still do not fully believe that she is no longer around. She used to tell me she was always just a phone call away.

Yet, all of our conversations were minuscule compared to her friends and family around her. They got to see her daily, talk to her daily, they knew her. I cannot even begin to imagine what pain and grief they are going through. I wish them the strength and the will to live their lives and move on.

What I did know was that she was not fully happy about her own life and wanted out numerous times. I just hope she is happy where she is now and is still with us in spirit. I wish there was a definite way to find out what happens after death because I truly hope we live amongst each other in spirit life; I hope to meet her one day and hear her beautiful voice again.

I love you, Beautiful... always.

I hope you enjoyed the December issue of the HT Magazine. Be sure to check out the full version for the full effect! =P