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To Sam

Family problems dilemma

I have been in care around 6 years now and I'm starting to see the true picture around my step dad:( my biological dad died just under 3 months ago and I didn't really know him until he became ill. My step dad brought me up but was on drugs at the time as I was only 12 when I found out he said he had stopped but hasn't. My question is should I keep seeing him at contacts or stop as he has played a real big part in my life and I'm struggling to make my life work around it at the moment?:(

hope you can answer this thank you

Ask Sam


Hi there,

It can be very hard to make difficult decisions, especially ones that involve people you care about or situations that you have been involved with for a long time. 

Sometimes it can be helpful to talk things through with someone else.  Speaking to an adult you trust can help you to see the situation more clearly. You might like to check out our page about asking an adult for help for help with this.  

I think it's important for you to fully consider what you want to happen. Think about what the consequences of any decision you make might be. One way of doing this is by asking yourself if you want to continue seeing your stepdad and then look at the good and bad points of the situation continuing as it is. Setting out the good points (like the fact he has played a big part in your life) and the bad points (like the fact you are finding it hard to work round it) can help you to work out what the impact would be of making the decision one way or the other.

It is also sometimes possible to do a trial to see how it would feel if you made the decision in this case to stop seeing your stepdad.  A trial could take the form of doing something or not doing something for a certain amount of time. You can then look at the thoughts and feelings you get from this trial and use them to help you make a decision. If you have a social worker or a support worker it might help to talk to them about this too.

You can always speak to a counsellor at ChildLine at any time for more support or to discuss things in more detail. 

Take care,

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