Friendships, Cliques and Crowds
Both girls and boys develop intense
friendships with other same sex children,
who share the same interests. Girls, in particular, develop more
intense intimate relationships with a few other girls. Boys develop
less intense relationships with a greater number of other boys.
Close friendships in the teen years have been seen to have positive
benefits to the child.
Cliques and Crowds:
A clique is a group of
several people, but it is small enough that all members interact.
Often cliques are made up of same sex individuals with similar
interests. The choice of membership in certain cliques is evidence
of a child's increasing control of their choice in their peer
interactions. Crowds are more reputation based. The individuals
in these crowds may not necessarily be friends. They are often
groups that have been labeled and stereotyped. For example, these
crowds may be known as the "preppies" or the "druggies."
There are three ways in which crowds influence adolescent social
1) Crowds and the way they are categorized help
adolescents learn about the alternative social identities that
are available to them.
2) The crowd adolescents belong to strongly influence
whom they are likely to meet and spend time with.
3) Crowds shape their members interpersonal relations.
Pressure to Conform:
Along with involvement with a certain
crowd or clique
comes the problem of pressures from peers. Pressure to conform
is a problem that may cause children to become more involved with
destructive behaviour. For example, an adolescent may become involved
in drinking, alcohol and sex in order to fit in with their friends.
See the Alcohol
and Drugs portion of the Problems Children and Teens Face
of Teens & Children