There are few things in life more worrying than feeling as though someone you care about is putting themselves in some kind of danger. Whether it seems as though they're behaving in a way that is going to get them in trouble, or they doing things that could result in them getting hurt, it can be incredibly upsetting to watch this happening and feel as though you can't do anything. Well, in reality, you can. In fact, you might be the one person who can actually help them pull away from the things that they're doing before it's too late.


Warning signs

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Being distant


If someone in your life seems a little bit distant, there's a chance that there's a perfectly reasonable explanation. They might be busy with work or school. They might simply want some time alone. Or, your friendship might just be drifting apart. It's sad, but it does happen. Check out this article for more on that subject: But if someone you're really close too seems as though they've suddenly started to pull away for seemingly no reason, there's nothing wrong with keeping an eye out to make sure that it's not a sign of something more worrying going on.


Spending time with people they shouldn't


Now, most of the time people don't want to dictate who someone else should or shouldn't spend their time with. After all, you might not like the person that your friend, partner, or child is hanging around with, but that doesn't mean that they're in any danger. However, if it seems like the people they're spending time with are pulling them into any kind of self-destructive behavior, then that might be the moment to step in.


Shirking responsibilities


We would all rather do something else instead of dealing with things like work or responsibilities. However, most of us are aware that these things are important and you can't just ignore them whenever you feel like it. However, if someone in your life has started to do just that, then that could be a sign of something serious. Whether they're spending their time doing something else, or they simply aren't able to get up in the morning to go to work or school, if someone suddenly starts shirking their responsibilities, that's a strong sign that things aren't right.


How can you help?

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Talk to them


The very best thing that you can do when someone seems as though they're in some kind of trouble is just to talk to them. Ask them how they're doing. Offer to help them, even if that just means giving them someone to talk to about the things that are going on in their life. They might not want to talk to you, but being there for them is the best thing that you can do.


Offer support


Even if the person in your life doesn't want any direct help, that doesn't mean that you should just walk away. The important thing is not that you solve their problem for them, but that you show them that you are there to support them no matter what they do. A lot of the time, when people are dealing with difficult things in their life, the isolation of it can be the hardest thing of all. However, by letting them know that you're there, you can help them feel less alone and much more likely to reach out for help when they need it.


Point them towards professional help


Of course, it's important to remember that there's only so much you can do. As a friend, partner, or parent, you might feel as though you need to solve their problems for them; there's really only so much you can do. On the other, there are people out there who are actually qualified to offer help to someone who is in trouble. Whether it's an organization like or a qualified therapist, there are always options out there. One thing that you can do is to guide your friend towards the help that they need.


What not to do

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Attack them


When someone you care about is going through something or putting themselves in danger, it can be incredibly scary. That feeling of fear can often manifest as anger at that person. The issue with this is that a direct confrontation of that sort often ends up pushing that person further away from you. If you talk to them about it, make sure that you do so carefully and diplomatically. Feeling persecuted is just going to make them less likely to want to talk about their problems.


Make them feel guilty


The impact that someone else's choices have on your life can be pretty significant, but it's important to remember one fact: it's not about you. You might be very upset at everything that's happening, but you're never going to be able to offer them the support that they really need if you make them feel guilty for the way that things have impacted you. Make sure that they know that you're in their corner every step of the way. If their behavior has impacted your life, there's a good chance that they already know this and are already feeling pretty guilty about it.


Ignore it


On the other hand, you definitely don't want to ignore the problem either. Sure, you want to be delicate about how you confront the issue, but pretending it's not there for the sake of a quiet life is just going to make things even worse. You might not have much power, but there are things that you can do. Ignoring the problem isn't going to help anyone.


While you can often feel powerless when someone that you love is in a position like this, it's important to remember that there are a lot of things you can do. That being said, there is a limit to what you can do to help, and sometimes the only thing left is just to step back for a while. As much as you might want to help, you can't do everything for someone who won't help themselves and trying is going to make your life that much harder. Looking after yourself is just as important as taking care of the other people in your life.


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