Phones used to be stationary, there was one, at the most two to a house, but today there’s one phone per person in most homes. Children as young as five years old, may carry a cell phone. Wearing designer clothes was reserved for the wealthy. Today, children are starting at younger ages (think four and five years old) desiring and even demanding name brand clothing.
I spoke to a teen, who related that most popular teens, are the best dressed teens. She related that some of her peers are bullied because of the clothing they wear. Peer pressure is nothing new, however, the viciousness that some teens are exposed to when they don’t follow the crowd, can be heart breaking.
At the root of this dilemma lies parents’ financial values.
Will parents succumb and pay unnecessarily high prices so that teens will fit in with the “current in crowd” or will parents teach teens to be independent thinkers? What if the majority of parents in previous generations, stuck with the crowd, and instead of standing firm to their values, they modeled giving in to peer pressure? Imagine scientists, afraid to stand up and express their thoughts about the earth being round instead of flat, about space exploration, or about medical advances.
Progress is the result of independent thinking. Peer pressure is real; many “parents” are succumbing to peer pressure daily. They ignore their own inner belief system and do what they believe other parents are doing for their teens. The greater loss is not money spent on things, is that parents through modeling, teach teens to give in to peer pressure and ignore their independent thoughts.