Problem of the Month - Peer Pressure!

Hi Laoise,

As you grow up, this kind of thing is going to happen more and more, so it’s great that you’re actually stopping to think about this now, and not allowing yourself to be pressurised into doing something you’re not comfortable with.

Teen discos are very popular and it’s how lots of people in secondary schools socialise, so this won’t be the last invitation you receive.  However, it’s really important that you only go if you want to, rather than letting other people decide for you. 

As for clothes, again, peer pressure can play a big part here – if all your friends are dressing in a certain way, it can be really hard to be the one making a stand and being different.  The secret is to only do things that you are comfortable with. If something doesn’t feel right for you, then don’t do it – your conscience is really your best guide here.

There are a few things you can do to avoid giving into peer pressure, whether it’s being asked to go to discos, dress a certain way, or even something more serious:

  1. Be really definite when you say no. Look the other person in the eye so they really get your message.
  2. Be repetitive if necessary. The more others hear your message, the more chance they will accept your position
  3. Get away from the environment. If the group you’re friends with are all putting pressure on you, look for real friends – those who share your values.
  4. Think about how you will feel about yourself if you give in – this can be a powerful motivator.
  5. Don’t be fooled into thinking everyone is doing it – they’re really not!

I hope this helps. Just have confidence in yourself and do what you know is right for you!

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