Education.com
Try
Brainzy
Try
Plus

The Recurring Pattern

The Recurring Pattern

Related Articles

Related Topics

based on 1 rating
By
Updated on Mar 5, 2009

When I was in kindergarten my next-door neighbor told me that I could be in her secret club if I ate a dog biscuit. After I ate the dog biscuit it turned out there was no secret club. I have since found that all of my peer pressure experiences pretty much follow the doggy treat pattern: Friend provides incentive for stupid act, I agree to stupid act, I enjoy it, I regret it. Just for clarification, I did enjoy the dog biscuit; it was not too different from a cookie, only meat flavored.

I'm far from a kindergartener, but the same sequence of events has happened throughout my life, just with different instigators. I find the striking similarity between kindergarten and contemporary peer pressure to be noteworthy. The pattern suggests that peer pressure is not a learned behavior, but an inherent one. In other words, we're born with it.

Nowadays people hold out a bottle of beer, and they don’t tell me I can be in their crowd, but the act itself seems to imply such fantasies. The incentive is unspoken, but its there. As I'm sipping the beer, avoiding eye contact, I enjoy it. I like letting go, and freeing up, and acting a person who is not myself. But I regret it the next day, because, like the dog biscuit, I understand that what I did was gross.

Although I rarely give in to peer pressure, I can fall for the pattern just like anyone else, because when I do give in, I've followed the same four step pattern: I hear the incentive, I do it, I enjoy it, and I regret it. I go through the motions without adding a unique flare, following the script that has been laid out for me, as though I’m being herded down a winding corridor, and I just keep putting one foot in front of the other. No matter how many lessons I get, I can't help but repeat my mistakes.

Like all things that are so completely human, peer pressure is addictive. The inclination to pressure and to submit to pressure is a natural human phenomenon. This is not a new trend that kids these days are learning. Even you parents must remember peer pressure experiences from both your childhood and adulthood.

So, should I be angry with my friends for pressuring me? Probably not. Like most everyone, parents included, I’ve handed out a few dog biscuits in my time. Should you feel like a bad parent if you find out your child has submitted to, or taken part in, peer pressure? In most cases, the answer is no: it's just life.

Add your own comment
DIY Worksheets
Make puzzles and printables that are educational, personal, and fun!
Matching Lists
Quickly create fun match-up worksheets using your own words.
Word Searches
Use your own word lists to create and print custom word searches.
Crossword Puzzles
Make custom crossword puzzles using your own words and clues.
See all Worksheet Generators