Toddlers are their own breed of human, and they can be balls of energy and also sweet little cuddle monsters. Parents are always trying to figure out their toddlers, and they are not always successful. All they know is that they want to raise their child to be kind, empathetic, and strong.

They spend a lot of their time aiding their child’s development, and they are thinking about the future on the possible issues their child will run into. They wonder about what they can do to make sure their toddler has the skills they need for when they will one day need to face challenges.

One of these challenges is peer pressure. Peer pressure is something that a lot of children have to face, but they don’t usually face it until they are much older. However, parents may be wondering if there are things they can do now with their toddlers to help them fight peer pressure when the time comes.

RELATED: Realistically Helping Your Child With Peer Pressure

The truth is, there are a couple of things that mom can do to prepare her toddler for peer pressure, and it doesn’t involve any conversations that may be too much for a toddler to understand.

Help Them Be Independent

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Toddlers are curious, and they are chasing their own independence. They are convinced that they are a full-grown adult in a tiny body, and they are not afraid to let moms know what they want. According to Just In Time Parenting, mom can use this need for independence to her advantage. When you help your child be able to think for themselves, they will already be better programmed to battle peer pressure. Let them be independent, and make some choices. Teach them how to think for themselves and make those decisions.

Praise

A mom playing patty cake with her young daugther
via Instagram / @staceelg

According to Family Doctor, when children feel good about themselves, they make better choices. They are more likely to resist negative peer pressure because they are confident, and know they are capable of thinking for themselves. When you are with your toddler, make sure you are offering up a lot of praise. These are all things you can do that teach your toddler to handle peer pressure, and they don’t even realize it. It just becomes part of their development.

Establish Rules

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While toddlers may love to push the line, they need structure and discipline. Despite their protests, they thrive off rules and boundaries, and these can also help them deal with peer pressure. According to Learning Lift Off, when a toddler is in a home with clear rules and boundaries, they have a clear understanding of what is right and wrong. They know that there are things that they shouldn’t do, and they can use this in the schoolyard. They can also take these family rules and apply them to every aspect of their lives.

Peer pressure involves a lot of thinking about the consequences of our actions, so this should be a part of your everyday talk with your toddler. If your toddler is about to do something or wants to, talk to them about what they think could happen if they did it. This may be just you talking to them in the beginning, but they will understand.

Sources: Just In Time Parenting, Family Doctor, Learning Lift Off