Peer pressure is an omnipresent force whose ‘Power’ can be observed in at most every dimension on adolescent behaviour such as their choice of dress, music, language, values, leisure activities…
It is also the influence exerted by a peer group encouraging individuals to change their attitudes, values, or behaviours in other to conform to group norms.
Social groups affected include membership groups in which individuals are formerly members such as political parties and trade unions, or social cliques in which membership is not clearly defined.
This further buttress the fact that peer pressure makes those affected to adopt the attitude or behaviour of others because of real or imagined pressure from them.
Who Are Most Affected?
Peer pressure is commonly associated with youth and teenagers or adolescent. This age group experience peer pressure in some form in their life. This is because most youth spend most of their times in schools and other groups that they do not choose and are seen as lacking the maturity to handle pressure from friends. In addition to this young people are more willing to behave negatively towards those who are not members of their own peer groups.
World wide studies have been going on since the 1970s, showing that certain teenagers/adolescent are more likely to succumb to peer pressure.
This include those from single parents homes, those with very permissive parents, those with authoritarian parents, youths with no self esteem, those from dysfunctional homes, those teenagers exposed to anti social behaviour through their peers or family.
What Are The Causes Of Peer Pressure?
Adolescent is a time where children are trying to figure out who they are at the same time they are adjusting to numerous physical changes.
It is a time when adolescent are trying to find their identity at the same time, they are trying to figure out who their crush is that week. It is a time when they are trying to balance the changes of puberty with the weekly changes of home work and extra circular schedule.
During all of this teenagers search for identify and find them selves with increased autonomy as the become less reliant on their parents.
The peers provides a support item as they can share their interest, thought and concerns with someone experiencing the same thing.
Teenagers are exceedingly self conscious and aware of what the popular majority is into. They yearn for acceptance and will often do anything to receive the approval of their peers. Their desire for approval can often compromise their beliefs, values or morals. The following are usually reliable science that an adolescent has began to conform to peer pressure.
They include changes in behaviour, language, clothing, attitude, preference (Music, food etc) values, morals, or beliefs and overall change producing a new or completely different person than what is normal for that adolescent.
In my next post I’ll be discussing the types of peer pressure.
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