Feel like your friend group is turning into a clique? Want to be included in one? Don’t. These are some reasons to avoid this social situation:

  • You’re cutting yourself off from other friends. The “exclusivity” of cliques requires excluding people and making them feel left out. Even if someone is an old friend or seems like they would make a great friend, if they’re not in your clique, they’re out.
  • Peer pressure. Membership in the group means you have to do everything the other people are doing. You shouldn’t be pressured into doing something you are uncomfortable with just because your friends are doing it.
  • They empower bullying. There is power in numbers, and cliques use this power to make fun of others who are different. This can come in many forms, like gossip, name-calling, and cyberbullying.
  • They keep you from being yourself. Cliques make people like and dislike the same things as each other. Love anime, but your group thinks it’s lame? You will have to give up that hobby, or do it in secret. Avoid cliques: do everything you want to do, be friends with whomever you want, and express yourself!