Peer Pressure

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Peer Pressure

By, Ella Greene (15 year old daughter of Rebecca Greene):

Peer pressure is not what you think it is. Chances are when you think of peer pressure you think of someone making fun of your child for refusing to do something. But it is much simpler than that. Peer pressure could just be a group of people asking you to do something. With this in mind here are some things I would’ve liked to have been told about peer pressure.

Peer pressure and social anxiety are a perfect storm: I was personally most susceptible to peer pressure when I was anxious to make everyone like me. My worry about “fitting in” led me to being pressured into situations I did not want to be in. So, if I would have worked on my social anxiety sooner, I would not have felt so much peer pressure.

If their opinion of you can change based on you saying no to something, maybe rethink your friendship/relationship: I say this because I was worried about losing friends. Now that I’m older I realize that your friends shouldn’t want you to do something that you are uncomfortable with. Relationships and opinions of you shouldn’t change because you prioritized your own comfort over doing something with them.

It is okay to prioritize your own comfort: No, you aren’t a bad friend for saying no. No, you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to unless someone you love desperately needs it. It is not selfish or a character flaw to say no.

Finally, you have people to talk to: If you are in an uncomfortable situation reach out to your support system. Easy as that. I like to use my mom as an excuse to get out of things all the time.


Rebecca Greene (Mom):

As a mom of three wonderful kids, I’ve seen firsthand the challenges they face as they grow and navigate the world around them. One of the biggest hurdles is peer pressure. It’s something we all went through, and now, watching my own children deal with it, I realize just how important it is for us as parents to be there to guide them.

Understanding the Pressure

Peer pressure can come in many forms. It might be about wearing certain clothes, trying new activities, or, more worryingly, engaging in risky behaviors. Our kids are constantly influenced by their friends, social media, and the world around them. As moms, we need to stay proactive in helping them navigate these pressures.

Open Communication is Key

One of the most powerful tools we have as parents is open communication. Create an environment where your kids feel comfortable talking to you about anything and everything. Ask about their day, their friends, and what’s going on in their lives. Listen without judgment and be there to offer support and advice. Let them know it’s okay to say no and that you respect their choices. I work on this every day with my kids. They don’t always feel comfortable talking to me, but I want them to know that they always can – about anything!

Building Confidence and Self-Esteem

A child with strong self-esteem is better equipped to handle peer pressure. Encourage your kids to pursue their own interests and passions. Celebrate their achievements, no matter how small, and remind them of their strengths. Help them understand that they don’t need to conform to fit in. They are unique and valuable just the way they are. We want our kids to learn what they enjoy doing and what makes them happy. We want them to follow their own path and not easily be influenced by others.

Role-Playing Scenarios

One practical way to prepare your children for peer pressure is through role-playing. Discuss potential scenarios they might encounter and practice responses with them. Whether it’s saying no to a party they don’t want to attend, or declining to try something they’re uncomfortable with, role-playing can help them feel more confident in their ability to stand up for themselves. As Ella mentioned above, teach them to blame you!

Setting Boundaries

Teach your children the importance of setting boundaries. Help them understand that it’s okay to walk away from situations or people that make them uncomfortable. Reinforce the idea that true friends will respect their choices and that it’s better to be alone than in bad company.

Leading by Example

Our kids learn a lot by watching us. Demonstrate how to handle peer pressure in your own life. Whether it’s declining an invitation or sticking to your principles, show them that it’s okay to stand up for yourself. Your actions will speak louder than words and provide a powerful example for your children to follow. A perfect example is that I don’t drink if I am going to drive. I teach this to my children, and I am prepping them that I expect them to never drink and drive AND never to get in a car with someone who has been drinking. I make it clear to my kids that they can call me at any time of the night, and I will get them.

Final Thoughts

Peer pressure is an inevitable part of growing up, but with our guidance and support, our children can learn to navigate it with confidence and grace. Keep those lines of communication open, build their self-esteem, and always be there to support them. Together, we can help our kids grow into strong, independent individuals who are true to themselves. What feels right to them? What are their own morals and values? What do they believe? What interests them? What clothes do they like? Let them learn about themselves and let us be a strong foundation to help them find themselves and the life they want.

I want to thank Ella for always being so open, honest and helpful to all of us. I hope she knows that she can always talk to me about anything. I am also glad she knows that she can always blame me.

Laughing, Learning, Loving,

Rebecca Greene, LCSW-R


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Whinypaluza Notes:

Whinypaluza Mom Group:

If you are looking for a supportive community, come join the free Whinypaluza Mom Facebook group.  I created this as I wanted us to have a place where we can talk about tips, strengths and challenges we are having.  It is another step I took to help everyone to know that you are not alone. Come take part in my June birthday challenge! Jump in and join the group and bring a friend with you! I love to give away prizes. This group is private so please find me on Facebook at Whinypaluza or Rebecca Greene and message me to ask for an invite. I’m also on Instagram @becgreene5 and @whinypaluza_mom. I am also on Tik tok @whinypaluzamom.


The Whinypaluza Schedule:

Whinypaluza Wednesdays: My weekly blog comes out every Wednesday.  I am always open to your topic requests.  A new Vlog (video blog) also comes out every Wednesday night on Facebook and You Tube live at 9:00 PM Eastern time to discuss the blog.  If you would rather listen to a podcast than watch a Vlog, you can wait for the following Wednesday and the Vlog is released on my Podcast.

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By |2024-07-10T15:17:46+00:00July 10th, 2024|Coping Skills, improvement|Comments Off on Peer Pressure

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About the Author:

Rebecca Greene received her Bachelor’s degree in psychology and her Master’s degree in social work at the University at Buffalo. She has experience working as a therapist and supervisor for families whose children had severe behavior problems. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years before diving back into work. Rebecca is a social worker, blogger, vlogger, podcaster and author. She lives at home with her husband Seth, their son Max, their daughters Ella and Lillie, their cats Faith and Joy and their dog Tanner. Rebecca’s full house keeps her very busy. She finds much joy in writing and loves connecting with the experts on her podcast.
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