The National Parenting Center

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Helping Your Teen Resist Peer Pressure

There is much you can do to help your teen resist negative peer pressure. The following are some of the best ways to help.

• First, teach your teen by your own good example. Don’t smoke, drink too much or drive too fast. Say no to friends when you need to. The teen can see that it’s possible to say no and still have friends, to be sober and still have fun.

• Second, practice assertiveness skills. Rehearse for the times when your teen will have to say no in a difficult situation when you can’t be there to help.

• Third, explore your teen’s fears of being different. Saying no can make one feel different, and it’s scary to face possible ridicule and rejection. Discuss what makes a true friend and how daring to be different can be mature and courageous.

• Finally, help your teen find positive ways to feel good. Saying yes to self-esteem, enhancing hobbies, interests and activities can help him say no to harmful quick fixes. Standing up to peer pressure is one of life’s greatest challenges. Your teen needs your loving help.

An expert in the field of adolescent behavior, Ms. McCoy has authored eleven books on the subject including the best selling “The Teenage Body Book”. Additionally she has written hundreds of articles for major national magazines. Coordinator of the Clinical Ph.D. Program at California School of Professional Psychology and Staff Counselor at the Center for Individual and Family Counseling in North Hollywood, California.

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