My eldest daughter has one year left of primary school before she starts high school, and I’m not going to lie, I’m terrified. I’m not ready yet. I pray that this next year goes incredibly slowly! My two main concerns are bullying and peer pressure. When I was offered this guest post to share with my audience, I thought it was a great topic. So here are 4 ways to teach your child to resist peer pressure.
AD | Guest Post
How To Teach Your Child To Resist Peer Pressure
Peer pressure is something all children face at some point, so it’s important that we as parents teach them strategies for handling it. It can be hard as adults to assert our needs and boundaries, so it’s easy to see how children might find it even more difficult to resist group pressure. Read on for some advice from a prep school in North London on how you can equip your child with the skills to recognise and resist peer pressure.
Model and teach assertiveness
Teach your child that it’s okay to say no and establish personal boundaries. They will learn this from seeing you demonstrate such behaviour, and communicating your own needs with confidence. Help your child understand that it may be hard to go against what their peers are doing, but it’s important to do what they think is right for them in any given situation, regardless of anyone else’s actions.
Also, teach them to respect and honour assertiveness in others, this is key when it comes to teaching your child to resist peer pressure. If they can see others standing up for what they believe, they’ll be more likely to do it too.
Foster tolerance and respect
Help your child to understand that they should be tolerant of other people’s opinions and ideas, which might differ from theirs, and expect tolerance in return. Teach them to respect other cultures, so that they can have a better understanding of why different people do different things.
However, it is key that they understand that although it’s fine to assert your own mind and disagree with someone, it should always be done in a respectful, polite and friendly manner.
Highlight to your child that difference should not just be tolerated but celebrated. Remind them that everyone is unique and it’s okay to think and act differently from others – in fact, their individuality might help set them apart when it comes to achievements later in life. Teach them to be proud of their uniqueness.
Encourage healthy friendships
Getting to know your child’s friends can help so that you can see first-hand what type of influence they are. By doing this, you’ll be able to spot any unhealthy relationships that might occur, but also you will be able to encourage friendships that have a positive impact on your child.
Encouraging your child to get involved in a wide variety of extra-curricular activities will definitely expand their social circle and give them more experience of interacting with different types of people. They’ll have multiple friendships to enjoy rather than relying on one particular group of friends which will stand them in good stead for later in life.
Although we should emphasise to our children the importance of cooperating with others and getting along with people, it’s also important to teach them that you don’t have to sacrifice your values to fit in.
I hope you found this advice as useful as I did. I know from watching my teenage step-daughter go through the process of leaving her high school to move to sixth form, just what a huge impact a small, yet solid friendship base can be. Children, especially teenagers, become so reliant on each other, but also scared to stand out that peer pressure almost controls their identity. It’s been so amazing to see her come out of her shell and discover and embrace her own identity. If you have any tips you think I should have mentioned, do let me know in the comments below and please share this post with friends you think might benefit from it.