Youth Troubles (1) – Peer Pressure
August 12 is International Youth Day. This week we look into the troubles and struggles of the youth du jour.
This week’s feature “Youth Troubles” will look into works of art on the internet that address these concerns.
What is Peer Pressure?
Peers are people who are part of the same social group, so the term “peer pressure” refers to the influence that peers can have on each other. Although peer pressure does not necessarily have to be negative, the term “pressure” implies that the process influences people to do things that may be resistant to, or might not otherwise choose to do. So usually the term peer pressure refers to socially undesirable behaviors, such as experimentation with alcohol and drug use, rather than socially desirable behaviors, such as academic success, although it could be applied to either, and either could be a positive or a negative experience for the individual.
Peer pressure is usually applied to younger people, especially teenagers. Adolescents are particularly vulnerable to peer pressure, because they are at a stage of development when they are separating more from their parents’ influence, but have not yet established their own values or understanding about human relationships or the consequences of their behavior. They are also typically striving for social acceptance at this stage, and may be willing to engage in behaviors that will allow them to be accepted that are against their better judgment.
Here are some useful links:
Teens and Peer Pressure
“C’mon. Everyone’s doing it.” So why shouldn’t you?”
Teens Health talks about Peer Pressure
Have your friends ever used these lines on you? Did you give in, even though you didn’t want to? (Info and Image Source)
These are a few of the goodies in the Peer Pressure Bag-of-Tricks. The tricks include put-downs, rejections, and reasoning, as well as pressure without words, or unspoken pressure.
Learn to spot the tricks. Being aware of the pressure is the first step to resisting it.
Check out this website with interactive materials about Peer Pressure.
Peer Pressure Isn’t Always Bad
Peer pressure isn’t all bad. You and your friends can pressure each other into some things that will improve your health and social life and make you feel good about your decisions.
Think of a time when a friend pushed you to do something good for yourself or to avoid something that would’ve been bad.
Here are some good things friends can pressure each other to do:
You and your friends can also use good peer pressure to help each other resist bad peer pressure.
If you see a friend taking some heat, try some of these lines …
We don’t want to drink.
We don’t need to drink to have fun.
Let’s go and do something else.
Leave her alone. She said she didn’t want any.