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Teens Who Talk To Mom Resist Peer Pressure

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va., Dec. 26 (UPI) — Teens, who more openly express their views with their moms, even if their viewpoints disagree, are more likely to resist peer pressure, U.S. researchers say.

Study leader Joseph P. Allen of the University of Virginia and colleagues looked at more than 150 teens and their parents, a group that was racially, ethnically, and socioeconomically diverse.

The teens were studied at ages 13, 15 and 16 to gather information on substance use, interactions with moms, social skills, and close friendships.

Researchers used data from youth, parents and peers, but they also observed teens’ social interactions with family members and peers.

The study, published in the journal Child Development, found teens who hold their own in family discussions were better at standing up to peer influences to use drugs or alcohol.

Among the best protected were teens who had learned to argue well with their moms about such topics as grades, money, household rules, and friends. Arguing well was defined as trying to persuade their mothers with reasoned arguments, rather than with pressure, whining, or insults, Allen said.

“The healthy autonomy they’d established at home seemed to carry over into their relationships with peers,” Allen said in a statement.

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