I don't know exactly where this belongs, but I need serious help. As my username implies, I'm a Bais Yaakov girl in a frum community. There's a lot of isolation in my small suburban community, and as a result a lot of girls tend to rebel. I'm only a freshman, and I'm already seeing a lot of issues among classmates of mine. Honestly though, I need specific help with a close friend of mine.
There's a certain girl in my class. I've known her for several years now. She is very smart and a kind person. She sees me as a confidante so I know a lot about her; she is the last of eleven children and her father is bipolar. Privately she told me that at times she "hates him"; she says that it was different when she was younger because she could forgive him, but now she holds a deep grudge in her heart against him.
She's very pretty but also insecure with herself, so it shouldn't have surprised me, maybe, when she took up with boys, like all of her sisters did. For several months already she's been "hanging out" with boys in parks . . . at midnight. At first, she assured me, it was all platonic, but then it quickly changed into physical relationships. Her grades slipped, she became even more insecure with herself. She informed me that she desperately wants to stop - in her words, "I want to stop breaking the laws of shomer negiah, etc., but I don't want to stop hanging out with boys."
At first I was concerned because, besides the fact that she is breaking a huge mitzvah, she's also endangering her life. The park she goes to is in an extremely dangerous neighborhood; there are known to be murders and assaults, and she is a teenage girl with only the protection of a fifteen-year-old boy. After months of debate (and, admittedly, several tissue boxes worth of tears) I went to a teacher who I knew had helped other girls and might be able to help her. This teacher guessed immediately who the girl was, and I felt both relieved and unhappy with myself for breaking the confidence. Unfortunately, over a month later, this teacher has not brought it up at all. This girl is still meeting boys in parks at midnight.
Now, though, I'm even more worried for her. Her self esteem was never very high, and I sense her deep repulsion and unhappiness with herself. She says that sometimes she feels dirty and degraded, and she doesn't feel like she can change but she's hurting deeply.
This is the exact text of what I sent her when she commented that she feels disgusting:
"You were dealt a unique set of circumstances that might make you feel messed-up or insecure, but only you have the ability to make something of yourself over them. Sometimes you'll mess up and make mistakes, and sometimes you'll lose against temptation. And sometimes you'll triumph over it and there is no greater feeling. If you're working on yourself and you know who you are, then there is room for change and improvement. Right now if you're confused and insecure and hurt you can't completely change. It'll take effort and a lot of power but right now what you have to do is find yourself and then you can improve yourself. God made you beautiful and it'll always be a struggle but I know that behind all that beauty lies a brain and right now I think you're still searching for yourself. Right now I don't want you to beat yourself up or blame yourself, I want you to take a step back and ask yourself if you'll be ashamed of this in 10 years . . . and I think only you can decide what is right for you. Be yourself and be proud of it, but I want you to remember who you are and how you got there."
Her response was that I'd given her something to think about, but just days later she was back to self-loathing.
I thought maybe I could help her, or at least I hoped I could. Believe it or not, I've been stressed and losing sleep - and it's not as if I got a lot of sleep to begin with - over her. I just want advice. Please don't tell me to criticize her deeds - I don't thinks that's what she needs. It's a vicious cycle, and I wouldn't post this if I didn't honestly need advice.
What would you do? Please help!