There may be times when you’re out in a group, particularly of friends, when everyone else wants to do something aside from you. Of course it may seem easy enough to not join in if you don’t want to, but sometimes others will encourage you to do so until you feel as though you have no other option. The main issues that are involved with peer pressure tend to be smoking, drinking, drugs and sex – you’re more than likely to face this at some point, especially throughout your teenage life. If you do feel pressured into doing anything at all that you don’t want to, no matter what it is, then don’t be worried – hopefully this advice will help you to handle this situation well.
Sometimes the things your peers tell you may not even be true – there’s a good chance that some people just make things up to fit in and seem cool in front of their friends. So, don’t always believe what you’re told and definitely don’t let your own decisions be affected by this. There may even be other people within your friendship group that feel pressured into doing something just as much as you, but they are just too afraid to speak up for themselves. If you are the one who stands up for yourself, and you make it clear that you don’t want to do something, then you may even be helping someone else to do the same thing, relieving pressure and setting a good example for others.
Remember that your friends should always respect you no matter what decisions you make, so if you don’t want to do something and they dislike you for it then they aren’t a true friend, and you most certainly shouldn’t care or worry about their opinion. If someone continues to pressure you into doing something after you say no then be sure to be assertive with them – don’t give in to the pressure because you will regret it later, and this isn’t fair on you.
If you have a specific question you want answering, or a topic that you would like advice on, then don’t hesitate to contact B**P at firstname.lastname@example.org – you can remain anonymous or we can publish your name, just let us know what you would prefer.