Peer pressure is something that we have all experienced throughout our lives.
Peer pressure is when you feel like you have to do something just because all of your friends are doing it, or when others try to influence your decisions or actions.
It is important for parents to make their children aware of peer pressure so that they can recognise when it is happening to them. It is also essential to teach children to say ‘no’ when they feel uncomfortable.
Spotting peer pressure
To help your child fight back against peer pressure, your child will need to be able to spot when it is happening. Explain to your child certain situations where they may experience peer pressure and role play some examples. Teach your child to be sensible and confident in their decision making and reassure them that they can always talk to you if they feel worried or upset.
It is important that your child feels confident enough to say ‘no’ when something makes them feel uncomfortable. It can be extremely hard for your child to say no to their friends, but it is important to explain that true friends will never pressure them to do something they don’t want to do.
Get to know your child’s friends and encourage your child to invite friends to your home. Spend time talking to your child about their relationships at school and if you have any concerns you can always ask their teacher for advice.
By teaching your child to be accepting of other people and to be proud of their own individuality, your child is less likely to be phased by peer pressure. Peer pressure works by making an individual feel wrong or unaccepted for not following along. Explain to your child that we don’t all have to be the same or do the same things in order to fit in. We must respect all races and appreciate the diversity of other cultures.