The Dangers of Peer Pressure
By Lauren Pratt
Is peer pressure an issue at Novato High School? Clearly, the answer is yes. People at Novato High School face peer pressure every single day. Peer pressure can lead to bad experiences in high school and leave kids feeling worthless.
According to Wikipedia, Peer pressure happens when kids are encouraged to follow their peers by changing their attitudes, values, or behaviors to conform them to be a different way.
“I think that people shouldn’t be affected by peer pressure but they are,” said Novato High sophomore Tayler Anderson. “If you feel you are being pressured, you should be able to stand up for yourself and say no because in the end it’s your decision. Don’t put yourself in that situation in the first place. You are in control of yourself. If you do not want to have sex, drink, or do drugs, then don’t let your peers judge that decision. You should always stay true to yourself and if your friends are making you do something you don’t want to do then they are not your true friends.”
One major concern that high schoolers face these days is being accepted. Kids tend to think that they won’t be accepted if they don’t do certain things, such as have sex, do drugs, and drink. Peer pressure has a negative effect because there can be a loss of self confidence, academics can be impacted, dangerous habits can develop, and it can make kids feel horrible about their lives. Additionally, it can distance students from their family and friends, and potentially lead to self harm and suicide.
Novato High junior Arianna Sabatella discussed her thoughts about this issue.
“I feel like peer pressure is a main factor, especially in high school. High schoolers feel the need to have sex, do drugs, and drink to fit in and sadly I feel that it will always continue in high school no matter what because when your friends are doing something they want you to do it as well, and will most likely pressure you into doing it,” said Sabatella.
Peer pressure will sadly always be a part of high school. According to the website yourlifecounts.org students can reduce peer pressure by being repetitive, looking for positive role models, and not being afraid to speak up and ask for help. Let’s make high school a better place and not peer pressure people into doing things they wouldn’t usually do.