DEAR ABBY: I am 19, and I have been smoking and drinking -- a lot -- ever since I was 14. I also sneak out and go to parties and hang out with a gang I'm in.
We get into a lot of fights. I know I have hurt quite a few people, and I want to set myself straight. I'm worried because I'm dealing with major anger issues and I don't want to hurt anyone else. Please help me. -- ANGER IN THE SOUTH
DEAR ANGER: The gang life can be difficult and dangerous to escape. If you have relatives in a different city, a step in the right direction might be to ask if you can live with them for a while.
I'm sorry you didn't mention whether you managed to get your high school diploma. If the answer is no, your next step should be to see if you can take adult education classes and earn your GED. At the same time, inquire if there is counseling available through the school to help you with your anger issues.
Stay safe, remain focused and you will be surprised at what you can achieve.