It has been observed that high school students face more anxiety due to peer pressure. Thus, it is necessary that teenagers have a better understanding of the influence of peers to deal with it effectively.
There are quite a few myths around peer pressure and I have discussed it in my earlier post, you can check it out to guide your teenage children.
The effects of negative peer pressure may start with bullying in high school and also go on to excessive drinking, smoking or substance abuse when in college. One would continue to keep doing on things they think are wrong to feel accepted and connected to the group. In such a scenario family support is very important. Parents have to find out ways to help their teenagers to avoid the pitfalls that can result from intense peer pressure.
Here are some constructive things that parents can do to help their teenagers deal with peer pressure.
A positive relationship and good communication from an early age can ensure that your teenager will talk to you if she’s feeling the negative influence of her peers. They should know that you are always there to listen and will always support them. Look for opportunities to talk to them about their experiences of peer pressure so you can guide them.
Teach them to say ‘No’
Teenagers need to learn to be assertive. They should know about the situations where they have to learn to say no. you can discuss such situations with them. You can brainstorm along with your teenagers of creative ways to come out of uncomfortable situations. Teach them that its fine to make an excuse if you are not comfortable doing something and know that it is wrong.
Share your experiences
You can always share your teenage stories and experiences of dealing with peer pressure. Knowing that you have also gone through similar situations and sharing your learnings with them will help them deal with their own. They will learn to make healthy relationships.
Don’t be critical of their friends
Encourage your teenager to invite their friends at home and get to know them. But do not judge their friends. If you feel a friend is having a negative influence than instead of being critical rather talk to them gently to make them understand. Always pinpoint the behaviour you do not like and not the person.
Choose positive relationships
Encourage your teenager to form positive relationships. They should learn to choose friends who do not put undue pressure on them rather those who respect their choices.
Never hesitate to speak to the school counsellor, teachers or seek the help of an expert if you feel you are unable to help your teenager deal with peer pressure.
This post is a part of My Friend Alexa Season 5 with Blogchatter
Read other blog posts in Parenting Your Teen series here: