Peer Pressure on Children in High School

Parents all over the world face pressure to control their teenage sons and daughters. They are crying for help to save their wards from the peer pressures. As soon as the children leave their school and step into high school they find themselves in a kind of glamour world. They intend to perform some odd jobs just because either their friends are doing it or it becomes a matter of showing self standard. Among these are the vices of taking up smoking and alcohol. This mainly happens especially when it is a matter of showing off in front of peers. In order to keep up with this trend students become rebellious and their parents feel helpless. Thus, the cause lies in responding to peer pressure by creating an identity in front of the peer group and the effect is the inclination towards various vices during teens. (Hill, 89)

Man has been known to be a social being and isolation can lead to detrimental side effects. With this in mind, it can be argued that groups play an important role in the life of man because they offer mutual support. For instance, counseling groups have been known to be effective tools in offering mutual support and the rehabilitation of various social problems. This social problem in the context is peer pressure. This more often leads to alcohol addition. The result of peer pressure or social problem for this research consists of high school children who are addicted to alcohol. The youth have been known to be prone to various addictions for instance alcohol due to various reasons for instance peer pressure. This has led to various negative implications in their lives which are not limited to social evils like crime and dissolved moral ethics. On the other hand, effective group therapy is available to ensure that such youths who suffer alcohol addiction get help. Group therapy will not only help such youth get well but it will help such youth to refrain from relapse due to lack of mutual support.

But this is the way out. The issue in this context is alcoholism due to peer pressure. The society considers alcohol addition on high school students a great threat because the youth are the future leaders of tomorrow. Hence, alcohol addiction amongst the youth is a major concern for the society. On the other hand, the work force also gets affected if the youth get addicted to alcoholism. For instance, students addicted to alcohol are not expected to perform well in schools because alcohol reduces their output. Alcohol has become an integral part of their lives in such a way that it is affecting their performance in their studies. Consecutively, the problem of alcoholism also posses a major threat to their relationships with their families. The problem of alcoholism cannot be tied to a person or a certain race and this means that any youth can be addicted to the problem.

This is at the centre of the grievous problem, now taking on endemic proportions. The tragedy of Britain’s young drinking themselves to near death is giving rise to a generation of people who are going to do themselves even more harm, in later life. The damage to their bodies will be revealed in later life even though it may not be apparent now. The National Health Service is taking a huge toll with doctors reporting facilities strained to the limit with the traffic of grievously injured youngsters who felt compelled to drink their brains numb.

A lot of research has been done and findings documented on the subject of alcohol addiction among the youth. According to the research done by the National center on addiction and substance abuse at Columbia University found out that 3.8 million full time students regularly abuse drugs (Pauline Vu, 1). This shows that the problem of alcoholism is rampart and needs to be addressed urgently because it keeps on increasing from one day to another. For instance in March 2007, the US surgeon general issued a call to action to stem underage drinking with recommendations for the alcohol industry, the government, colleges, communities, schools and parents (Pauline Vu, 1). Subsequently, the need to counter the problem of alcohol abuse keeps on increasing owing to the rise of addiction problems which is a major threat to the success of high school education.

Drugs are another effect of peer pressure. The first step to drugs is a very common symptom of this issue. This may lead to addiction and ending up into rehabilitation center. It is impossible to idealize what peer pressure can make one perform. Different criminal activities or teen sexual acts are common outcome of this pressure. The cause of this peer pressure starts with the search of self-identity and it lies in the path of development of self-belief. Once a teen is out the of the emotional and physical shelter of the parents it becomes obvious that there waits a competitive world to face and environment of high school provides the first step of this outer world. Under such conditions, it becomes necessary to make a mark of ones existence in the real world, in front of the peer group and to oneself at the same time.

However, the best and easy way in this tough world, or in the peer group, is to prove oneself as a rebellious teen. Sure, being an exceptional student is always a better choice any day, anywhere. Nevertheless, to achieve this goal needs a hard and arduous schedule to follow and the result is not quick either. Thus, to achieve importance in the peer group it needs rebellious image. Creating a tough image is the best and the easiest way out. (Brown, 7) It is a common practice in Oxford for the new students to attend drinking parties in local pubs. It is an act of binge drinking that is supposed to be proof of toughness in front of peers and worthy of admission in the student community. (Hill, 104)

In order to create a tough and rebellious image the elements needed are always wrong. These are smoking and alcohol, drugs and teen sexual activities. Sure, most of the time the peer group is directly not putting the pressure on the student or handing out a well formulated manifesto with lists of vices to be followed but simple gestures with indication of the student being a ‘good’ but ‘boring’ fellow makes the student afraid of identity crisis or popularity loss. (Hill, 103) Both of these elements are fearful to a student and thus the student feels that in order to be recognized it is important to indulge in activities related smoking and alcohol, drugs and teen sexual acts. Thus, it is quite obvious that if the elements of peer pressure is taken into consideration as the ‘cause’ then the indulgence into these vices are the ‘effects’ of this ‘cause’.

Works Cited

Brown, B. “The cultural context of family-peer linkages in adolescence.” New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development 27.116 (2007): 1-15.

Hill, Martha S. “Timing of childhood events and early-adult household formation.” New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development 19.71 (2001): 87-109.

Pauline Vu, (2007). Colleges go on offense against binge drinking. Stateline. 2007. Stateline website.