I got part 1 of this message, too, where you explained that you don’t want to feel like you’re bossing her around and stuff, and I completely feel ya there. Sometimes when someone is caught up in something that’s bad for them, it starts to feel normal to them and they don’t see it as a problem, so when people confront them, they can feel like they’re being attacked for ‘nothing’—as again, they don’t see it as an issue.
But you’re right—she is tampering with her life. And you’re her good friend, so she needs you the most right now. Although you don’t want to give up on the friendship, sometimes what happens is that it dwindles down. It becomes very hard to stay friends with someone who is now living an entirely different life than you, even if that’s not how you wanted it. But it’s important to try to help her first, to try and salvage her life and your friendship.
How do you tell her how you truly feel? Well, bring it up slowly and in a way where she doesn’t feel like she’s being scolded or told what to do and, most importantly, in a way where she doesn’t feel judged.
If it were me, I’d plan a girls’ night out (or night in) and at some point when she’s comfortable I’d say something along the lines of, “I know you’re kinda experimenting with some stuff lately, but I just want you to know that it worries me because those things can spiral out of hand so quickly—and I know you’re a very smart girl and you can do what you want…but I hope you know that I see you doing awesome things with your life and don’t want some stupid drugs to ruin all that for you.”
Don’t let it escalate into an argument, just explain how you see her potential and want the best for her, as all friends should.
I’ve had friends who abused alcohol, and when talking to them about it I was very, very non-judgmental and calming toward them. I asked questions first to engage them and to get them to open up (things like, “How much would you say you drink in a week?” or “What do you drink usually?”) all the while keeping a very neutral face. Then I reassure them that they’re smart and point out one of their gifts/talents, and if I’ve known them long enough I’ll talk about a memory we shared from pre-alcohol abuse. Then I ask if there’s anything fun that they like to do that’ll keep their mind off alcohol. If they let me I try to spend time with them doing things that’ll keep their mind off drinking: stay in and have a movie marathon and cook/bake, go chill in a cafe and chat, shop, etc.
When talking to her, it’s imperative that yo don’t leave her feeling attacked. This will only make her want to go and do it more to piss people off. Ease in to it and let her know she’s loved. Hopefully she’ll see you’re coming from a pure place.
It is tricky, I won’t deny that. And one talk likely won’t be enough to make her stop all together. Educate her if you can. Explain the long term effects of some of these things, the damage they can do. Sometimes people just genuinely aren’t aware. They hear, “Drugs are bad,” but get desensitized to hearing that and need to hear HOW, exactly, they aren’t good.
I wish you both all the best. I definitely wouldn’t give up on her, though, luv. Now’s not the time.