Cliques, Peer Pressure, and Teens

By Taylor, age 14, Ontario

Have you ever noticed that on the first day of school everybody has their own crowd, their own friends? Then there's you standing there with your friends, and all you want to do is fit in with a crowd, to be mentioned as a cheerleader or jock, to mean something to a group. Cliques aren't actually what you think they are. There a very many cliques, but few good ones. The clique you're in describes you best - your personality, the way you look, and the people you like.

What is a clique? A clique is you and your friends together and how you are labeled. I'm sure most of you have seen Mean Girls. It's all about cliques. You may fit in to one very well because you like sports or can cheer. But just because the "in crowd" has all these parties and you want to be invited doesn't mean you have to dress and act like them. Don't change yourself for someone else.

I have been trying to be someone I'm not just to impress a guy, and I have come to realize that I'm not being true to myself and it's not fair. He's getting the impression I'm into certain music and clothes when I'm not. I have my group of friends and he has his. I now realize I don't have to change just for someone to like me.

You may think the cheerleaders and jocks are the most well liked kids in school, but when you go around and actually ask people sometimes they don't like them one bit. Some are okay, but others treat you like crap just to feel what they need to get them through the day. They aren't cool because they can buy expensive clothes, wear tons of makeup, and live in a mansion. They're cool because of their personalities. Don't try so hard to change yourself because the friends you have now love you for you and the friends you will make won't. You're not impressing anybody.

Most people get sucked into cliques because of peer pressure. Girls are more likely than boys. The best way to stay out of cliques is to be friends with everyone, from the nerds, jocks, and cheerleaders to band geeks. Just enjoy your four years of high school. You're only a teen once and you only have one life to live.

Try getting the nerds to help the jocks out with math and the jocks to help the nerds out with girls. There are many cliques that can help other cliques. You may not think you belong to a clique, but you do. You don't have to belong to just one; you could like math, but also sports, and so fit in with both the nerds and the jocks.

I asked a few of my friends what they think about cliques, and this is what they said:

"I think they shouldn't happen, and it stereotypes people. It makes people think a certain way about someone else and puts a label on them, and no one should be labeled as anything." - Skye, 16

"I think they are good because you know your place in school." - Bailey, 15

"I find cliques aren't helpful because if you want to meet new people and you're fed up with your clique it makes it difficult because your clique hates other cliques." - Kyle, 17

"They can be bad because they make people feel excluded, especially if you're new to the school and don't know your way around." - Cathy, 14

"I think they're silly. We should all be equal because then there wouldn't be bullying." - Taylor, 14

In conclusion, 4 out of 5 of the friends I asked don't like cliques. They think they're bad, hurtful, and the people in the cliques usually have power over everybody else.

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February & March Magazine Issues

March 15, 2012

The February and March issues of Sweet Designs Magazine are now online, featuring a combined 53 new articles and features!!

- Cover: Stephanie Lynn reflects on 5 years
- Cover: India (of Darn-licious knitwear)
- Life in the dumps (moving in with my bf)
- The difference between men and women
- Angels among us (parts 1 and 2)
- Arts graduates & the dark night of the soul
- Triple threat (how I survived my teen yrs)
- Dating isn't easy (my true story)
- How to turn not-so-great gifts ... (fashion)
- Ten reasons to love being single
- Taking the big leap (college)
- Valentine's Day (not what you'd expect!)
- The last of the cold (hopefully) (fashion)
- A month full of love
- Ten tips for successful airline travel
- Reasons I love writing for SDM
- Who needs love?
- They're not all the same
- The life I'm glad I don't have (fiction)
- Professional dress/ finding Fendi (fashion)
- An airport anniversary: a true story
- Inappropriate Facebook photos
- The perks of a big city (college)
- A night(mare) to forget (part 2)
- The Anita Blake series (book review)
- Saving June by Hannah Harrington (book)
- Under the Mesquite by GG McCall (book)
- The Lullaby by Sarah Dessen (book)
- If I Stay by Gayle Foreman (book review)
- My sweetheart (original poetry)
- Isn't it funny (original poetry)
- The stranger (original poetry)
- A winter wonderland (original poetry)
- One night valentine
- The thick envelopes (college acceptance)
- Southern love
- Healthy hair and vitamins
- It's a date (dating idea alternatives)
- The 30 hour famine
- School's out forever!
- Marching right back into spring? (fashion)
- Dear John
- When TV shows depict your life
- 3 Fun ways to rock spring's hottest trends
- Neglected teeth
- Starting something new
- Guy movies
- To hesitate or dive in?
- Deadly, by Julie Chibbaro (book review)
- Beastly, by Alex Flinn (book review)
- I don't care (poetry)
- Together, alone (poetry)

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