Tag Archives: teen behavior

Peer Pressure (part 2)

In an part 1 of Peer Pressure the focus was on negative and positive peer pressure at all ages. This article will focus specifically on teen peer pressure, which is typically between the ages of 13-18 but could start or occur earlier or later. Most teens participate in some typical teen behavior like spending less time with family, changing their appearance, arguing more, and most will experiment with alcohol and drugs. It is important for parents to educate themselves on what is considered “normal” behavior and what is not, what to look for if they suspect their teen is starting to use or abuse alcohol or drugs, and how to differentiate and identify if their teen is succumbing to peer pressure or being bullied. Children of all ages need to be taught what peer pressure and bullying are, how to identify them in their lives, and how to handle different types of situations related to them. If children and teens know these things they will be better equipped to handle it if and when it occurs to them or others around them.
Peer pressure and bullying can significantly effect a teens self esteem and when their self esteem is low they are more likely to give into peer pressure to try to fit in. Even though teens often make parents feel their opinion is not important or they do not care what they think, most of the time they are ultimately looking for their parents acceptance and approval as well as their peers. Parents can help improve their teens self esteem by giving them praise, support, and with positive pressure to make good choices.
If parents feel like their teens situation is beyond peer pressure, self esteem, or bullying and their teen may be showing signs of depression or suicide it is important that they get help NOW. Parents should not be so ashamed or embarrassed of a teen who is suffering from depression, drug or alcohol abuse, or suicidal tendencies to seek help. These things can be treated and even prevented with help. It is important that parents include their child’s school principal and/or counselors in any problems they feel may affect their child in school whether it be peer pressure, depression, or drug or alcohol issues. It does “take a village” to raise a child and nobody can help fix what they do not know is broken. Children spend the larger part of their day at school. Teachers and counselors are there to help the children become the best people they can be, the easiest way for them to do that is to be included in any concerns parents may have for the safety or well being of their child.