Finding yourself in a sticky situation can be a very scary thing.  A sticky situation could be anything from getting unwanted messages from people, giving information about yourself by accident, being hacked, being followed by someone when you’re out somewhere, getting into a conversation that turns into an uncomfortable experience for you. 

There are many more situations that can be classed as sticky and below we are going to go through some tips on how to get out of a sticky situation, tips which can be transferred to many different situations. Even if a situation may seem small to others or even to you once it’s over, those feelings about the situation are still valid.  

Since the theme of the month is online safety, the sticky situation that we are focussing on is, how to get out of receiving unwanted messages from people online. Many people may say if you get unwanted messages just block these people from your contacts but sometimes it’s not all that easy for many reasons. 

What are some of these reasons?     

🦉You don’t realise that you have got yourself into an unwanted situation until you’re in too deep. 

🐵 People who send unwanted messages can either be people who know the person they are sending to, or they are a stranger.

Unwanted messages from people you know may be hard for some to put a boundary in place as they don’t want to make things awkward between each other, have a fall out, or worry what others may think if they say no. As well it could cause a backlash for the person receiving the unwanted messages since it could go beyond just the unwanted messages. 

Some messages from strangers may be easier to ignore due to the messages being clear about their intentions. However, there are many people who use many different tactics to pull people into conversations. For example, presenting as someone who is the same age as the recipient when in fact they may be a lot older than they say. They engage in conversations that come across as someone who is trustworthy but instead they have ulterior motives.

🐨 You don’t fully understand the consequences of these unwanted texts, especially people who are vulnerable (including children, disabled people and the elderly etc). 

So now that we have established the sticky situation we are in and some of the reasons as to why someone may get themselves into this situation, let’s talk about how to get out of this sticky situation. 

🎨 Keep calm – When you realise that you are in situation that you don’t want to be in like receiving unwanted messages, keep calm. Being calm within a difficult time will help you be in a state of mind that is rational. You are able to make decisions that are made with more thought and the decisions you make will be made without regret. 

🎳 Let someone know – Even if you already have a plan of getting yourself out of the situation, still let someone know. It will help your mind rest knowing that somebody knows what you are going through and that somebody is there to make sure that you’re ok. For those that don’t have a plan, the person who you’ve told can guide you out of the situation and get the help and support you need. 

🎭 Set your boundary – If you receive an unwanted message from someone you know but you don’t want to lose them from your lives, let them know what they are doing is something that you don’t want. 

 What can I say to be able to set my boundary? 

  • “Please can you stop sending me these messages” 
  • “I’m uncomfortable with the messages that you are sending me, please can you stop.”
  • “I would appreciate it if you didn’t send these messages to me, please. They aren’t something that I want.” 

However, if they ask why, you don’t have to explain further since what you have already said is an explanation in itself. You can also do the above with a stranger that has texted you as well but be more careful with these people since you haven’t had any prior experience with this person other than over text, so don’t be afraid to block this person. 

Overall, sticky situations are something that many people have experienced. There are many reasons as to why someone gets into a sticky situation and it’s not always the person’s fault so make sure not to blame yourself. These are just a few tips that can help you to get out of a sticky situation. However, there are more ways that you can get yourself out of a situation so please ask for help and get the support you need.