Dealing with the Pressure to Drink

by Molly Louzan on September 24, 2014

Peer Pressure Stickies

Do you often “want out” in situations involving alcohol? Many of us don’t actually want to drink, but feel pressured to do so by our peers. We know that drinking has negative effects on our body and behavior, but we get caught up in worrying that we’ll be judged by others if we don’t follow the herd.

Consider some ways to avoid falling victim to Peer Pressure:

Prevent the situation where you may feel pressure.

  • Go out with people you trust. If you feel uncomfortable in a situation and want to leave, you should know that your friends will back you up.
  • Don’t go near the drinking games… they’ll only cause trouble.
  • Offer to take on a non-drinking role at a party, such as photographer or DJ.
  • Designate more than one sober person to each group. You won’t feel so pressured if you’re part of a “Sober Squad”.
  • Share your feelings about your decision not to drink before going out.

Respond to feeling the pressure.

  • Leave any situation where you feel uncomfortable (try using excuses like “I have to get up early for work tomorrow…” or even run to the bathroom to “freshen your make up”).
  • Say no, and be persistent. They’ll get tired of hearing the same answer.
  • Use athletics or academics as an excuse not to drink (for instance, “My coach would kill me if he ever found out, I’m not taking that chance” or “I could drink now, but I know that my brain will be mush during my exam on Monday if I do”).
  • Flip the focus. Ask the person offering why they feel the need to drink, or how much they’ve had. They can’t focus on you, when you’re focusing on them.

Shift your perspective.

  • Build self-confidence. Who cares what decisions you make? It doesn’t affect anyone but you.
  • Think about reasons behind why peers are pressuring you. Do they have their own insecurities?
  • Evaluate your friendships. Are they beneficial to you? Should you make friends that you feel more comfortable with?
  • Get a reality check. Not everyone drinks, and most students who do drink do so in moderation.

It’s difficult to remember in the situation, but your wellbeing and safety are much more important than impressing others.

Peer Educator Alert: Keep an eye out for Project PACK baskets being distributed around campus this week! Grab one of the shopping lists attached to the basket, and help us provide “comfort kit” material for survivors of sexual assault!



What is it that makes college so different from high school? Is it moving out for the first time, the roommates, or the total independence gained? The transition in lifestyle often has people worried about one thing: the horrible, terrifying, “definitely-going-to-happen”


Now, everyone has heard about this illusive weight gain that is rumored to happen when you move to college, but it doesn’t have to.

Keeping the weight off and staying healthy is a lot easier than you think. NO diet or gym membership required.

1. Resist temptation:

The ice cream sundae bar at Tilly looks delicious, but do you really need to put piles of fudge and whipped cream on it? Try taking a little bit of ice cream to satisfy your sugar craving, and leaving the extras off.

2. Make at least 2 healthy choices each day:

Instead of ordering mozzarella sticks and fried mac n’cheese at Crimson, try ordering a delicious Greek wrap or turkey burger instead. Sure, it’s easy to go with the fried, greasy choices but switching out at least 2 of those snack foods a day can really help improve your health.

3. WALK:

Walk everywhere. Resist the urge to take the bus. Unless you’re injured or the weather is hazardous, walking is a simple and easy way to keep healthy, and stay active. Let’s be real, it takes a maximum of 15 minutes to get across campus and that walk is beautiful on a nice day!

4. Fight off the need to emotionally eat:

“I’m bored… I’m stressed… I’m homesick… I need to eat!” Snacking on junk food is an easy way to pack on the pounds, especially if you’re not moving as much as you usually do. Try grabbing a carrot stick, and finding an alternative activity to unwind.

5. Watch portion sizes:

It’s easy to load up your plate at Tilly… and then another one, too. It is called “ALL you can eat”. Try to keep your portion size to one plate with a variety of essential food groups.


If you think your new eating habits might be the result of emotional eating, take a peek at this article, Curb Your Cravings: Strategies to Become a Mindful Eater  from Student Health 101.


Peer Educator Alert: Stop by our “Do You Pour More?” Alcohol Education table on Monday, September 22, 2014 from 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. in ECC, or on Tuesday, September 23, 2014 from 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. in RCC. Do you know how much you’re really pouring?


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