Peer Pressure: Should you give in or not?

Eriana James, Guest Columnist

What’s so big about being peer pressured?
Peer pressure is a serious issue among students, especially those that are in high school. As defined, peer pressure (or social pressure) is influence a peer group, observers, or an individual exerts that encourages others to change their attitudes, values, or behaviors to conform to those of the influencing group or individual. In high school, peer pressure is very common because many students wants to fit in with certain crowds. It can be even more common with freshman because they’re entering a completely different environment.

When a person is pressured to do something to “prove” their loyalty or that they’re cool enough to be around, that’s when problems arise. No one should have to prove themselves to anyone no matter what the situation may be. Peer pressure comes with a lot of consequences both externally and internally. When you are pressured to do something and you actually do it, you have lessened your value as a leader. No leader will take direction from someone that causes them to harm themselves in anyway, whether that includes their attitudes, values, or behaviors. By following through with peer pressure, you become less of an individual and more a duplicate of someone. One important thing to maintain in high school is your individuality because once you get in high school a lot of things start to look similar, and it’s very hard to recognize a person for their uniqueness.

If you feel as if you’re being pressured into doing something you are uncomfortable with, it is O.K. to say no. The worse that can happen is that whoever pressured you won’t talk to you any more, and they might look at you in a negative way.

And, so what if they do?

At the end of the day you stayed true to yourself and remained and individual. Losing your individuality is so easy in high school because of pressure and trends that go around.

Everyone is unique; however, a lot of people don’t realize that because of the greatness in similarity among one another. So remember to think before you do something that you were pressured to do. You can say, “No,” and remain an individual, or you can accept and become a duplicate.