It can be hard to say 'no' to your friends, especially when they're all joining in.
Sometimes it can feel like you have to do what they tell you to in order to be accepted. It can make you feel scared and alone.
It's not okay for friends to pressure you like this. And it's not your fault. Try these tips to help:
1. Say it with confidence
Be assertive. Practise saying 'no' so that it's easier when someone asks. Avoid situations which make you feel unsafe or uncomfortable. You could explain that you're going to pay for something instead of stealing it.
You could also explain how the person who is putting pressure on you is making you feel. People should respect this and your choices, but this doesn’t always happen, Childline is always here for you.
2. Find friends who share the same values
Having friends who share your values and also don’t want to do the same things as you, can make things easier. It’s easier to say no to things together.
3. Think of an excuse
It should always be ok to say no to something you don’t want to do, but if it feels too difficult then you could think of an excuse you could use, like ‘I need to be home soon.’
4. Suggest something else to do
If you don't feel comfortable doing what your friends are doing, you could suggest something else instead. You can also leave the situation if you’re feeling really uncomfortable.
5. Avoid certain situations
You could try avoiding situations where you may be under pressure to do something you don’t want to do, such as not going somewhere you know people will be drinking alcohol or taking drugs.
6. Stand up for others
If you see someone else being pressured in to do something they aren’t comfortable with, it could really help them if you stand up for them. You can persuade others to not give them a hard time, as long as you feel safe to do so.