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Outside of the classroom, adolescents who have friends have better family relationships and more positive attitudes toward family relationships. Friendships can also compensate for inadequate families. For example, adolescents who have low levels of family cohesion but have close and supportive friends have levels of self-worth and social competence equal to their peers who come from cohesive families Friends allow for high self-esteem and self-worth, thereby promoting the exploration and development of personal strengths. Furthermore, adolescents who are engaged in friendships are more likely to be altruistic, display affective perspective-taking skills, maintain positive peer status, and have continued involvement in activities such as sports or arts. Finally, having close same-sex friendships in adolescence forecasts success in early romantic relationships in early adulthood.
Although peers are very important for adolescents during this developmental stage, parents also play an influential role in adolescents' lives. Laurence Steinberg and his colleagues found that adolescents whose friends and parents support academic achievement perform better than adolescents who receive support from only one, or neither. Hence, both parents and friends are important for adolescents' development. Moreover, adolescents are less influenced by friends when they have close and involving relationships with their parents. The ability of friends to influence the behaviors and attitudes of adolescents is magnified when adolescents perceive that their parental relationship is negative or deficient in support and guidance. Parenting styles can also affect peer influence. Authoritative parenting encourages adolescents to be less susceptible to peer influence specifically in domains in which peers are engaging in unacceptable behaviors, but more susceptible to peer influence in domains that are approved by adults. Hence, parents can adjust their style of parenting to reflect these favorable outcomes. In summary, peers are more influential in adolescence than at any other time in life. The quality of the relationship between adolescents and their peers, as well as the type of peers they associate with, play important roles in aiding or impeding their current and future functioning. There are aspects of all peer relations that are unique to the culture and environment in which they exist. The relationship parents have with their adolescents influences their children's susceptibility to negative peer influence.
Read more: Peer Influence - Family Relationships And Peer Influence - Development, Adolescents, Adolescence, Developmental, Friends, and Parents - JRank Articles http://family.jrank.org/pages/1264/Peer-Influence-Family-Relationships-Peer-Influence.html#ixzz1bcOK514f
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