We're all taught, that giving and keeping promises is a very good principle to abide by. You seem to be a reliable person and your friends love you for that. You promise and you never break your word, because it's just not right. But there are some situations, when it's impossible to keep your promise and you have to break it. Let's see, when it's OK to break your promise given to a friend and never feel ashamed of it.
The times when promises are broken should be really rare, because people expect that you do something for them and plan ahead. But no one can't be so naïve and believe, that all promises should be kept. It's just impossible because of the so called the “better good”. Some people might think, that the better good can stand in one line with the white lie, that really doesn't exist and was merely made up to make an excuse for the unacceptable behavior of those who can't keep their promises or lie. But we're not going to judge you, if you break a promise given to your friend, when you are in one of the following situations.
#1 Your friend abuses drugs or faces possibility of injury. You've known each other for ages and your friend thinks they can trust you, because you will keep the secret they tell you. Yes, you promise that you won't tell anybody, that your friend has a crush on the new student in your class. But if you find out that your friend is abusing drugs and refuses any help to stop it, then you can break your promise and tell their parents what's really going on. If you're afraid of going straight to your friend's parents, you can consult a school psychologist.
#2 Your friend just uses you. You're not very popular and want to be friends with other people, but they seem not to notice your existence at all. And then suddenly one of the classmates is interested in being friends with you. You're on cloud nine and you even make a promise to help them with the homework every week. But later you find out, that your new friend just uses you and your loneliness to get better grades. Now it's time to break your promise, because your real friend would never use you.
#3 Your friend has committed a crime. Your friend comes to your place one night and asks you to tell anyone who inquires, that you spent the last couple of hours watching TV and playing board games. Although it sounds strange, but you promise, because it's your best friend! But later you find out, that your friend's committed a crime, and now they are using an alibi to get away with it. No matter how much you love your friend, you shouldn't keep the promise, otherwise you will be charged for false statement.
These three examples may look extreme, but they should highlight the primary issue with keeping promises. The world is changing, and new information that comes to light can make you break your word. Whenever the promise you've made means that you compromise your core values, you don't have to keep it any more.
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