Peer Pressure

Grace Vaughn, Reporter

Peer pressure can be described as the influence that groups of people and friends have on one another. It can be bad or good depending on what action is taken, what consequences it has, and whether or not you want to do it. It is commonly viewed as having mostly negative effects. However, there are also many positive effects that people do not tend to recognize. 

One positive effect of peer pressure is the decision of going to college. In society, especially small towns, people are looked down upon for not going to college. Even though college is very beneficial, it is not made for everyone. As a senior, when everyone around you is talking about future colleges and dorm life, you want to automatically jump in and attend college too. Some students say they don’t want to go to college and end up going in the long run because all of their friends went. Hence, peer pressure in this sense turns out to be positive and beneficial. 

Another positive effect of peer pressure is attending school functions. Functions at school, such as dances and prom, make up a big part of high school memories. Going to events at school can help students become more involved and gives exciting memories to look back on. When all the girls plan to go prom dress shopping one weekend, you will want to go too. Not only is prom dress shopping fun, but you will also get the opportunity to make memories of finding the perfect dress with friends. In the end, it is certainly a positive outcome of peer pressure. 

However, one negative effect of peer pressure is drinking alcohol. Most teenagers who drink alcohol only do it to fit in or make themselves seem cool. If a teenager hangs out and associates with people who drink alcohol, they most likely will drink as well. Even if the teen doesn’t really want to do it, they will so no one will make fun of them or talk about them. Drinking alcohol is not good for you and can be very dangerous when out of hand. The more a person is around someone who drinks alcohol, the more often they will drink too. This kind of peer pressure ultimately has negative outcomes and effects. 

In sum, the older students get, the bigger the roles of peers play in life. Friends can influence everything from whether you go to college, attend prom and other school activities, and drinking alcohol. Peer pressure is not always deviant, though. Peer pressure can be viewed as having both negative effects and positive impacts.