Primary: Real friends

Friendships are built on what you do online and offline.

What’s the issue?

Most people act a little different at school to how they are at home, or when they are out with friends. When you use social networking sites, it is very easy to be a lot different from your offline self and you can be tempted to break all the relationship ‘rules’ of trust and honesty.

Why does it matter?

  • Our relationships with the people around us are important for our self-esteem and confidence.
  • People who are great to know are comfortable with themselves and take the time to really get to know the people around them.
  • Every time you interact with other people either face-to-face or online, you are presenting a particular insight into who you are. Would you want to know you?
  • Having secrets, and lying gets in the way of real friendship.
  • Relationships are built on what you say and what you do.


Be a friend to yourself

  • Accept that no-one is perfect! If you want to change something about yourself, try taking small steps towards your goal.
  • Give yourself a pat on the back when you do something particularly well!

Show respect for the people who care for you

  • When we get disappointed or unhappy it is easy to take it out on people around you because you know that they will forgive you. Take a deep breath or go for a walk and think about what is actually happening and what you really want to say or do—talking it through is better than blaming or throwing a tantrum.
  • Telling lies, online or offline, is the same thing.

Be a real friend to others

  • It’s nice to share things with friends but sometimes what they do isn’t what you are comfortable doing. Be prepared to say what you think and only get involved in stuff you choose to.
  • Understand that someone you know and trust may sometimes have a different point of view.

Printable advice sheet

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