25 Feb 2013
Everybody, no matter what age, is faced with pressure to 'fit in'. Peer pressure is when you feel you 'have to' do something that you might not usually choose to do but will do it to fit in with your peers.
Young people often feel this the most because they are trying to find their place in the world and the media targets a lot of messages at them.
In the teenage years this pressure can be even stronger because no one wants to feel like an outsider.
Peer pressure though, does not have to be all doom and gloom. It can be a very positive influence in your life as a way of:
- getting to know your limits and what you are willing to accept
- improving your ability to make your own choices.
Your friends and peer group can offer you lots of things like:
- feeling like you belong and are valued for who you are
- increased confidence and a sense of security, because you know that your friends understand what is going on for you
- a safe place to take positive risks, and to test out ideas.
To find out more about peer pressure and ways to deal with the negative side see our topic Peer pressure