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Peer Pressure Essay Ideas For Children

Peer pressure is influence on your behavior from a group that you interact with socially or professionally. It can be good or bad depending on what action is taken, what consequences it brings and whether or not you want to do it.

Peer Pressure for Teens and Young Adults

Positive Peer Pressure

  • Being encouraged to join the Debate Team can improve your self-confidence and your listening and thinking skills
  • Going to college can be positive for your future
  • Following the rules can keep you out of trouble and focus on what is important
  • Showing up at school on time helps you learn discipline
  • Respecting others will help you go far and will lead to people treating you well.
  • Being honest helps people trust you
  • Exercising is good for stress and fitness
  • Avoiding drugs can keep you out of jail
  • Working hard leads to achievement
  • Listening to rap music 
  • Volunteering at the Boys or Girls Club lets you share your knowledge and skills
  • Tutoring other students shares your knowledge

Negative Peer Pressure

  • Drinking alcohol while you are underage can lead to jail and is dangerous when you are young
  • Smoking is very addictive and can result in lung cancer
  • Experimenting with drugs can be deadly
  • Being encouraged to fight someone can lead to an assault charge
  • Stealing something on a dare can lead to imprisonment or a fine or both
  • Having sexual relations before you are ready or before you want to can lead to pregnancy and STDs
  • Bullying or teasing others 
  • Putting your health at risk with too much bodybuilding or dieting
  • Skipping school
  • Wearing clothes you don’t like because it is expected
  • Doing anything you don’t want to do
  • Driving fast or drag racing

Peer Pressure for Adults

Adults also have peer pressure that usually comes from a group of people that share interests or professions.

Here are examples of peer pressure for adults:

  • Having a maid because others in your peer group have one
  • Going to certain clubs where members of your peer group go
  • Buying a BMW you can’t afford because other in your peer group have luxury cars
  • Not drinking alcohol at a party
  • Waxing parts of your body
  • Going to Happy Hour with coworkers
  • Sending your kids to a certain school
  • Buying an SUV instead of a hybrid
  • Being a member of a certain political party
  • Contributing to certain charities
  • Working out at the gym
  • Only shop at certain stores
  • For women, being ultra-thin
  • Get a job with a well-known company
  • Wearing only designer clothes
  • Having an in-ground swimming pool in the back yard

Peer Pressure in Movies

  • Where the Heart Is - This is a movie about a teenager that gets pregnant and is abandoned by her boyfriend.
  • The Sandlot - A boy moves to a new neighborhood and soon joins a group of kids that play baseball and have other adventures together.
  • Grease - Sandy is pressured into changing to be more to be with the boy she loves.
  • Thirteen - In this movie a 13 year old girl tries crime, drugs and sex due to peer pressure.
  • High School Musical - A popular boy and a shy, intelligent girl audition for roles in the school musical. This concerns their peers and upsets the social order of the school.

These various examples of peer pressure show how behavior can be changed in many ways based on those around us. 

Do you have a good example to share? Add your example here.

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Peer Pressure Examples

By YourDictionary

Peer pressure is influence on your behavior from a group that you interact with socially or professionally. It can be good or bad depending on what action is taken, what consequences it brings and whether or not you want to do it.


en españolCómo lidiar con la presión de grupo

"Come on! ALL of us are cutting math. Who wants to go take that quiz? We're going to take a walk and get lunch instead. Let's go!" says the coolest kid in your class. Do you do what you know is right and go to math class, quiz and all? Or do you give in and go with them?

As you grow older, you'll be faced with some challenging decisions. Some don't have a clear right or wrong answer — like should you play soccer or field hockey? Other decisions involve serious moral questions, like whether to cut class, try cigarettes, or lie to your parents.

Making decisions on your own is hard enough, but when other people get involved and try to pressure you one way or another it can be even harder. People who are your age, like your classmates, are called peers. When they try to influence how you act, to get you to do something, it's called peer pressure. It's something everyone has to deal with — even adults. Let's talk about how to handle it.

Defining Peer Pressure

Peers influence your life, even if you don't realize it, just by spending time with you. You learn from them, and they learn from you. It's only human nature to listen to and learn from other people in your age group.

Peers can have a positive influence on each other. Maybe another student in your science class taught you an easy way to remember the planets in the solar system or someone on the soccer team taught you a cool trick with the ball. You might admire a friend who is always a good sport and try to be more like him or her. Maybe you got others excited about your new favorite book, and now everyone's reading it. These are examples of how peers positively influence each other every day.

Sometimes peers influence each other in negative ways. For example, a few kids in school might try to get you to cut class with them, your soccer friend might try to convince you to be mean to another player and never pass her the ball, or a kid in the neighborhood might want you to shoplift with him.

Why Do People Give in to Peer Pressure?

Some kids give in to peer pressure because they want to be liked, to fit in, or because they worry that other kids might make fun of them if they don't go along with the group. Others go along because they are curious to try something new that others are doing. The idea that "everyone's doing it" can influence some kids to leave their better judgment, or their common sense, behind.

Walking Away From Peer Pressure

It is tough to be the only one who says "no" to peer pressure, but you can do it. Paying attention to your own feelings and beliefs about what is right and wrong can help you know the right thing to do. Inner strength and self-confidence can help you stand firm, walk away, and resist doing something when you know better.

It can really help to have at least one other peer, or friend, who is willing to say "no," too. This takes a lot of the power out of peer pressure and makes it much easier to resist. It's great to have friends with values similar to yours who will back you up when you don't want to do something.

You've probably had a parent or teacher advise you to "choose your friends wisely." Peer pressure is a big reason why they say this. If you choose friends who don't use drugs, cut class, smoke cigarettes, or lie to their parents, then you probably won't do these things either, even if other kids do. Try to help a friend who's having trouble resisting peer pressure. It can be powerful for one kid to join another by simply saying, "I'm with you — let's go."

Even if you're faced with peer pressure while you're alone, there are still things you can do. You can simply stay away from peers who pressure you to do stuff you know is wrong. You can tell them "no" and walk away. Better yet, find other friends and classmates to pal around with.

If you continue to face peer pressure and you're finding it difficult to handle, talk to someone you trust. Don't feel guilty if you've made a mistake or two. Talking to a parent, teacher, or school counselor can help you feel much better and prepare you for the next time you face peer pressure.

Powerful, Positive Peer Pressure

Peer pressure is not always a bad thing. For example, positive peer pressure can be used to pressure bullies into acting better toward other kids. If enough kids get together, peers can pressure each other into doing what's right!

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