My friend always asks me to help him with his homework, and the other day he asked me for an answer on the test. I’m afraid I’m going to get in trouble. I want to say no but don’t know how to.
The thing about cheating, is that teachers usually punish the kids who give the answers just as hard as the kids who get the answers, so your friend is really asking you to take a big risk. I think you are right to say no.
When you want to say no to something, the simplest way is to just say the word no. And the truth is, being able to Just Say No is a great skill to have. But if you want more options, use my colleague Jennifer DeAtley’s 5 steps to saying no:
- Say NO with your voice, eyes, and body.
- Explain why.
- If you need to, say NO again and create some space.
- Offer an alternative, maybe like “I’ll help you study but I won’t do it for you.”
- If the above steps don’t work, walk away.
The other thing I’ll say is to take a look at this friendship. Make sure you feel like this is a healthy and balanced relationship overall, and not a friendship that mostly exists because the other guy sees you as his ticket to better grades. If that’s the case, think twice: you deserve better than that!