TEEN LIFE: Types of Peer Pressure (It’s Not All Bad!)

Many teenagers today face peer pressure on a daily basis. Peer pressure is defined as the influence on your teen’s behavior from their social group. Peer pressure isn’t always bad, though, as many people believe. Here are some different types of peer pressure:

Positive peer pressure- As stated above, peer pressure can be positive at times. When friends push other friends to excel in something or do great things, this helps teenagers feel confident and empowered. Examples of positive peer pressure include pressuring a friend to follow the rules at home and at school and convincing a friend to join the drama club.

Negative peer pressure– As much as we would all like for peer pressure to be positive, unfortunately that is not always the case. Negative peer pressure can be either spoken or unspoken. Spoken peer pressure is when someone verbally tries to get another person to do something, that may not always be in their best interest. Unspoken peer pressure is the result of one person seeing or hearing what others are doing. Examples of negative peer pressure include pressuring a friend to smoke or drink alcohol or watching what other teens are wearing as the latest fashion fad.


Movies featuring peer pressure– Many parents aren’t aware of this, but there are several movies that deal with the subject of peer pressure in one way or another. Thirteen is a 2003 movie that focuses on Tracy Freeland, an honor student who turns to a life of drugs and self-harm when she meets and becomes friends with Evie Zamora. The Pregnancy Pact is a 2010 television movie based on real-life events. The movie focuses on a group of girls at Gloucester High School, who decide to all become pregnant at the same time.


Statistics on peer pressure- When it comes to underage drinking, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism states that, mainly due to peer pressure, about 35% of teens have had at least one drink by the age of 15. On the topic of self-harm, the Mayo Clinic says that teens who have friends that self-injure, are likely to do it themselves. When it comes to cell phones and driving, the Teen Driver Source states that 19% of teenagers would stop using their cell phones while driving, as long as their friends did the same.

Sources: NIAA
Mayo Clinic
Teen Driver Source

Mamasita Amber
Mama of three children and proud new mama of a standard poodle named Prince Miguel.

15 Responses to “TEEN LIFE: Types of Peer Pressure (It’s Not All Bad!)

  • I remember watching the movie Thirteen so many times when I was younger. I loved that movie for some reason.

  • I’m a little shocked by that percentage of underage drinking, 35% seems so high! I totally agree that when teens have friends that set good examples, they’re likely to follow

  • My son is only 6 right now and I think about this kind of thing for when he gets older. I just hope he is smart enough to make the correct choices. Either way, we will talk to him about things he can encounter as a teenager and will be there for him regardless.

  • You most definitely need to schedule time to discuss these things. As a school teacher, I saw a lot of peer pressure. We would try to address it, but we couldn’t do it all.

  • I can only hope the same things for my son one day. He is only 3 right now, so I have some time. You’re right about how important this is. It’s not always easy to discuss either.

  • I definitely would not like to return to being a teenager, you go through such a lot at that age. I think a lot depends on who your friends are/who you hang out with and if they are a positive or a negative infuence in your life. I also think how you are brought up can play a pretty big role too.

  • Some mind blowing stats right there. I do agree though that peer pressure can be positive too – I’m a stubborn kid and always have been so when I was back at school and kids were like TAKE THIS JOINT I’d be like hell no because I always wanted to do the opposite haha! x

  • Peer pressure is real! It’s scary how much influence teenagers have over each other! It’s something as parents that we definitely need to be aware of!

  • Thank you for mentioning positive peer pressure people often only focus on the negative. I ant believe you mentioned thirteen I was starting to think I was the only one on the planet who remembered it. It ironically came out when I was 13 and I related to it so much. Thankfully I got my life together but I loved that it was so realistic.

  • Pbkourtneelynne@gmail.com'
    4 years ago

    I’m lucky! When I was in school I went to a school where it was cool to be super smart so I was always trying to get good grades to be in the “cool” crowd!

  • As an educator, I have seen all types of peer pressure in school. It’s important to make sure it does not become toxic and negative.

  • Peer pressure can be so scary, I never thought it could be positive but after thinking about it it makes sense.

  • This is a really great post that explores a lot about peer pressure. I like the reminder that some peer pressure is good.

  • Peer pressure worries me for when my kids get older because my son is a people pleaser. Hoping he is more affected by positive peer pressure than negative.

  • It’s scary how influential negative peer pressure can be on teens especially now with social media! They aren’t just having to deal with it just at school anymore – definitely something I worry about when I have kids.

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