Contact: 073 777 4434 Email: mzukona@nyakaza.org.za

Consequences of Peer Pressure

By Ayanda Mazibuko

Being a teenager can be challenging. We tend to do things to impress our friends not realising how our actions could affect our lives negatively.

We fall into the trap of experimenting with drugs, substances and partying the night way. As teenagers we have our fair share of positive and negative experiences, but peer pressure, curiosity, the availability of drugs and alcohol are by far the most destructive forces that affect us as vulnerable young people.

Teenage drug and substance abuse in our social spaces, among friends, at school and in our communities are a direct result of peer pressure. We are good at telling ourselves that ‘everybody else is doing it’ because we think our friends are more important that our health and future.

We are forever trying to belong and impress our friends by being ‘cool’ and getting acceptance in our social circles. We see experimenting with drugs and substances as a casual way of having fun and never see it as damaging our lives.

My feeling is: “All teenagers need to be educated about drug and substance abuse at home and at

school. The effects of drug addiction should be taught at home and at schools so we can make better choices about our lives and wellbeing, perhaps we would have less of Teenage Pregnancy in our schools!