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Why Girls Face More Peer Pressure than Boys

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Words: 820 |

Pages: 2|

5 min read

Published: Jul 30, 2019

Words: 820|Pages: 2|5 min read

Published: Jul 30, 2019

Girls face more peer pressure than boys (argumentative essay)

Malala Yousafzai once said “We cannot succeed when half of us are held back.” Malala Yousafzai is a women’s rights activist that was shot in the head because she tried to go to school. She believes girls are being held back from their full potential but society seems to think otherwise. The world looks down on women and girls and says they are sexual objects, they are less than boys, and they are supposed to be the “perfect woman.” Because of this, girls face more peer pressure than boys. The following argumentative essay will present the reasons for this situation.

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To start off, girls face more societal pressure than boys because they are over sexualized by boys. According to Many Ways to Be a Girl, but One Way to Be a Boy: The New Gender Rules, half of the girls participating in a study said they heard sexual comments or jokes about women daily by men. Half of those girls were 10-13 years old. This statistic is important because it shows how often sexualization happens. It isn’t just every once in a while. This happens daily. Another study said 81% of the girls 14-19 have at least one friend that has been asked by a boy for a nude photo. Boys see something they like and go after it. This is not ok. Girls are human beings, not objects. Boys sexualize girls and this gives girls even more societal pressure.

Not only are girls sexualized by boys, society tells girls they are less than boys. In a survey of 10-14 year olds across 15 countries, almost all the girls agreed society says they are vulnerable and weak. Furthermore, they all agreed they hear the world say boys are strong and independent. “Tomboy” behaviors in girls enjoyed more peer and parental acceptance than their male “sissy” counterparts, who faced significantly more stigma and rejection, the study said. Boys who ‘act like girls’ are generally not granted the same social acceptance because of the lower power or prestige associated with femininity traits and behaviors”. Girls all around the world have the idea that they are less than men because this is what they hear. Contrary to the girls, boys are not told this. Society tells boys they are the dominant gender. Therefore, girls have more societal pressure than boys.

In addition to these reasons, girls are also forced to believe they must be the “perfect woman.” In a survey done at Happy Valley Middle School girls were asked the question, “What do you think society values most?” The majority of the girls said they thought society values their looks the most. Many girls around the world feel this. Between Barbies, magazines, princesses, or even mannequins, the image of the “perfect woman” is everywhere. “Adolescent health risks are shaped by behaviors rooted in gender roles that can be well- established in kids by the time they are 10 or 11 years old, said Kristy Mmari, associate professor at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and lead researcher for qualitative research on the Global Early Adolescent Study. For girls, those risks can include child marriage, pregnancy, leaving school early, sexaully transmited infections, and exposure to violence”. Girls try to fit in the “perfect woman” mold and these risks become the outcomes. They do this so they will be accepted by society. There is a lot of pressure to be the “perfect woman” in the world today. Consequently, girls face more societal pressure than boys.

One viewpoint is boys have a lot of pressure to man up and not be emotional although evidence proves girls have even more pressure to be emotional. In a survey done by the Pew Research Center, 89% of women say there are gender differences when it comes to how people express their feelings. 67% of those women say it is because of societal pressures. On the other hand, 84% of men say there are gender differences when it comes to peoples’ emotions and only 46% of them say it is because of societal pressures. Society tells girls they are supposed to help a boy with his feelings and just forget about your own. Girls are allowed to deal with their thoughts inside their head. Contrary to popular belief, girls do not have to express their emotions. According to the fact that girls feel like they must put boys’ feelings before their own, boys face less societal pressure than girls.

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Because society says girls are sexual objects, they are less than boys, and they are supposed to be the “perfect woman,” girls face more societal pressure than boys. Girls everyday deal with the side effects of these pressures. Some have depression and others have eating disorders. They feel like they must check off boxes to fit in. Society is constantly looking at girls and telling them what they are supposed to be. Will you be like society and bring girls down or will you be the opposite and bring them up?

Works Cited

  1. American Psychological Association. (2010). Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. Retrieved from https://www.apa.org/pi/women/programs/girls/report-full.pdf
  2. Coyne, S. M., Padilla-Walker, L. M., & Fraser, A. M. (2014). “Girls Rule”: Gender‐role‐violating characteristics in popular children’s media in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia. Sex Roles, 71(7-8), 291-304.
  3. Ehrenreich, B. (2019). The hearts of men: American dreams and the flight from commitment. Twelve.
  4. Garner, R. (2021). The Impact of Gender Stereotypes on Women's Leadership Aspirations: An Argument for Positive Mentoring. In D. M. Duong & N. Stambulova (Eds.), Women in Sport Leadership: Research and Practice for Change (pp. 163-176). Routledge.
  5. Grieve, R., & Campbell, K. (2020). Gender differences in the effects of peer pressure on body image concerns of adolescent girls and boys. Sex Roles, 83(1-2), 35-45.
  6. Maguire, J. L., & Steinfeldt, J. A. (2019). ‘Just be yourself’: The pressures and effects of gender role conformity on LGBTQ+ individuals. In M. R. Dixon & M. P. Zanna (Eds.), Advances in Experimental Social Psychology (Vol. 60, pp. 1-44). Academic Press.
  7. Martin, C. L., & Ruble, D. N. (2010). Patterns of gender development. Annual Review of Psychology, 61, 353-381.
  8. Mmari, K., Blum, R. W., Atnafou, R., Chilet-Rosell, E., & Basu, S. (2020). Exploring gender socialization dynamics from early adolescence to young adulthood: Cross-national qualitative research. Global Public Health, 15(6), 831-850.
  9. Twenge, J. M. (2017). iGen: Why today’s super-connected kids are growing up less rebellious, more tolerant, less happy—and completely unprepared for adulthood—and what that means for the rest of us. Atria Books.
  10. Wood, W., & Eagly, A. H. (2002). A cross-cultural analysis of the behavior of women and men: Implications for the origins of sex differences. Psychological Bulletin, 128(5), 699-727.
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The Effect Of Peer Pressure On Girls. (2023, March 29). GradesFixer. Retrieved February 29, 2024, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/how-does-peer-pressure-effect-on-girls/
“The Effect Of Peer Pressure On Girls.” GradesFixer, 29 Mar. 2023, gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/how-does-peer-pressure-effect-on-girls/
The Effect Of Peer Pressure On Girls. [online]. Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/how-does-peer-pressure-effect-on-girls/> [Accessed 29 Feb. 2024].
The Effect Of Peer Pressure On Girls [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2023 Mar 29 [cited 2024 Feb 29]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/how-does-peer-pressure-effect-on-girls/
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