May 19, 2005
If your child is popular, he or she is more likely to get involved with drugs and alcohol and commit minor crimes such as vandalism or shoplifting, so says a study by UVa psychology professor Joseph Allen.
After following 185 area seventh and eighth graders, Allen found that well-liked kids are better adjusted, but also tend to pick up the habits of their peers.
"They're just like politicians. They are out in front, but they are following the opinion polls, trying to really be doing what people expect them to be doing," said Allen.
Allen says the best way to keep your kid out of trouble is to know their friends. If they get into trouble, chances are, your kid will too.