You can blame childhood friends for your bad behavior, science says

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Who you befriend in high school can influence how you’ll behave throughout your life, a new study has found.

By Baz Macdonald for Re: news

According to researchers from the University of Amsterdam, they can bring you success or trouble.

They found that after the age of 10, the most influential people who shape your personality move from family to friends.

Your friends during this time can influence how likely you are to make risky decisions about things like crime, alcohol and drugs, and unsafe sex.

They can even help determine what your beliefs and morals are.

The study, released Wednesday, also found that teenagers are challenging accepted norms and influencing each other with new values ​​that could make them “a driving force in the evolution of our cultural values.”

This could affect how people view issues such as the environment and gun ownership.

The level of influence a friend has depends on a number of factors, including how popular they are and how often selfish or selfless acts are seen and experienced in a person’s wider community.

Although the researchers found that friends can be good influences, negative examples were generally more influential than good examples.

The strength of this influence diminishes over time, so friends aged 18-20 have relatively little influence on your decision-making.

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