Everyone cares about what others think and we all want to fit in and be liked---it’s human nature. When we start thinking for ourselves, the influence of friends and people our age can be powerful. When these influences affect how you feel, dress, act, etc, this is called “peer pressure.”
Peer pressure can be positive or negative. Positive pressure from your peers might lead you to play sports, study hard, or believe in yourself. Negative pressure includes making fun of someone, telling a lie, or cheating on a test. Or, negative peer pressure can be more serious like skipping school, using alcohol or other drugs, shoplifting, or having sex before you are ready.
It is important to think about what could happen if you go along with the crowd. You make your own decisions---it’s okay to say “NO.” Young people make all sorts of decisions every day---some more important than others. The decisions you make say a lot about the kind of person you are. When you feel unsure, talk to someone you trust---your parents, another adult who cares, a close friend you respect, or call TeenLine, 713-529-TEEN.
It’s okay to say “YES” and it's also okay to say “NO” to many activities in your life. Enjoy your time as a teen---say “YES” to:
- Positive friendships
- School/sport activities
- Family relationships
- School studies
- Setting goals
- Following a dream
- Church activities
- Volunteer opportunities
- Taking positive steps to help yourself when in trouble
If you have more questions or need more answers, call the numbers to the right.
SHAPE Community Center
Offers programs to assist with peer pressure including an after-school enrichment program for teens 17 years old and younger and a summer youth leadership program.
Confidential and anonymous hotline for teens available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Trained teen volunteers are available to listen, help talk things out, and give information and other resources when needed.
Wesley Community Center, Inc
Programs available to assist with peer pressure including counseling and leadership development.