Meet Your Teen’s Barkada! Who Are Their Friends?

Your teen will always have a barkada or crew to join them in their crazy adventures. Here’s what the crew is usually composed of.

While every teen tries to make friends, they eventually find their niche or their core group. Their barkada — the teens in this group are the ones who will have the most impact on our teens. They usually have a shared identity. Being from the same school batch, same class, same sport, teammates, love video games — despite the shared identity, there are still some stereotypes and roles that allow them to function as a team. Here are the members of your teen’s crazy crew:

1. The RK (also known as The Rich Kid)

Every barkada always has that one teen that comes from an affluent family. Loaded with all sorts of connections and people, they’re usually the teen that seems to know “everybody”. Sometimes, they even know our friends, secrets, achievements and, all. They’re are usually two kinds of Rich Kids: the one that flaunts and the one that downplays their fortune.

2. The Bunso (or the Baby)

Teens adopt each other like siblings and there will always be this one teen who acts like the “youngest sibling”. Sometimes, it’s decided by birthday. But most of the time, it’s really just in their personality. Usually, this teen is loved by the whole barkada and any harm will trigger the whole, “You mess with one, you get the whole set” scenario.

3. The Daredevil

There will always be this one teen who seems to break every code of etiquette or logic. Not out of malice but simply out of fun and exploration. They’re the kind of friend to your teen who will suggest crazy ideas like eating a “Wasabi Sushi”, mixing Scotch and Soju into one drink, and getting everybody drunk. Usually, they’re balanced out by the parental figure.

4. The Parental Figure or The “Mom” Friend

This friend is the one every mom wishes their teen had. They’re the ones who are calm, wise over the years, mature, and capable. They’re different from the Ringleader or the Trendy One since they don’t normally actively make decisions for the group. Rather, they offer advice and play the role of taking care of the barkada. They’re also sometimes seen as “the anxious one”.

5. The Degenerate

Wonder how your teen seems to know a lot of the taboo stuff and doesn’t bat an eyelash? That’s because they have a friend who most of society would label as a “degenerate”. The degenerate study what society doesn’t like talking about like a science, making them quite calm in the face of talking about topics that would have scandalized most people.

6. The SJW (Social Justice Warrior)

Social Justice Warriors can be likened to “keyboard warriors”. While it’s okay to be aware of current events, Social Justice Warriors take it to another level by making everybody feel uncomfortable but leaving no plan of action behind. Sometimes, you will find your teen even muttering to themselves, “Why am I friends with this person again?”

7. The Trendy Friend

Either having the latest kicks and sneaks to the chicest designer clothes, this is the friend in your teen’s barkada who always appears as “best-dressed”. They can grab a charcoal grey cardigan and rock it with a full black outfit — turtleneck and skinny jeans — along with some flats or heels and still look good. Being trendy, however, doesn’t mean they always buy in signature shops. Some of them just know how to dig from bazaars and online shops, knowing how to work it.

8. The Walking Google

Also known as The Walking Encyclopedia, Google, or Dictionary, these teens are the ones who store data in their heads like a hard drive. Usually, they’re the one who supplies the barkada will all sorts of facts and trivia to help make a decision. Did their parents force this teen to read encyclopedias at 2 years old? Not really. They just “know things”.

These teens are also normally the kind of teens who “info dump”. You’ll notice one day that your teen may be struggling with History but a few weeks with these Walking Googles suddenly has them reciting and narrating the entire Tragedy of Pearl Harbor by memory!

9. The Ringleader

Charming and the stronger personality of the group, the Ringleader is usually the one who makes the decisions. In most Filipino teen barkadas, it’s always good to have one to get rid of the proverbial question, “Where do we eat?” However, a lot of teen barkadas usually shift the position of ringleader to the Mom Figure or the Walking Google because they’d rather have someone more informed make the decision.

The more comical or funnier version of the Ringleader is “The Donya/ Don“. They’re different from Karens in a way that they know what they want and they want it now. They’re usually the ones who can twist the arms of people with sheer confidence and intimidation alone.

10. The Street Smart

Not to be confused with gangsters and thugs, the Street Smart One is the teen who seems to know how to get things done. Their grades may not be the greatest but they get results. Looking for a good pizza place with a budget of PHP1000? This teen probably has 10 on their list. Wondering how to get to this obscure part of Manila without blowing a hole in the wallet? They’re the ones who memorize the bus pathways.

They’re probably going to be the reason why your teen will learn how to commute if we’re not the ones to teach them.

11. The Sketchy Friend

In Zoomer or Millennial slang, this teen bears the title “The Sketch” because their words always seem to have some underlying inside joke that’s known only to the barkada. Not to be confused with The Degenerate, the Sketchy One is the kind of teen who will probably respond with, “Eh, I just found it somewhere.” compared to the former who will tell you exactly where and how that taboo knowledge came about.

12. Dr. Jekyll/ Mr. Hyde (also known as The Quiet One)

Every teen barkada has that one person who’s so quiet and kind but when they snap, everyone runs for the hills. Hence, the title. On a good day, they are mindful of their temper and emotions. They keep themselves calm and try to avoid confrontation when they can. But when pushed into a corner or realizing that the barkada being threatened, these are the kind of teens who will play “for keeps” and “take no prisoners”.

While some of these roles do merge into one person, these are the common archetypes found in a teen’s barkada!

Despite having these different roles and archetypes, teens have groups because they have a shared identity. The shared identity may include being the nerd, the geek, the athletes, the mean girls, and a whole bunch of other cliques we thought only exists in chic flicks and teen rom-com-dramas. Despite they’re rather being an eccentric bunch, know that they all have one motive in mind: to protect and support one another.

Here’s more about teens!

How To Stop Our Gamer Kids’ and Teens’ Rage
Why Parenting A Teen Sometimes Feels Like A Fight For Control
The “Mom” Friend: Every Mom’s Favorite In Their Teens’ Barkada

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