Parent Cue - Middle School - Trending: Arguing - A Stand-Alone Message on Arguing


 JAMES 1:19
Care more about the person you’re arguing
with than the point you’re trying to make.

“Everyone should be quick to listen,
slow to speak and slow to become angry.” 

JAMES 1:19b, NIV
Trending is a series of standalone messages that covers relevant and important topics in the life of your middle schooler. In this week’s Trending message, we’re tackling one thing that everyone will deal with throughout their lives: arguments. In this phase, your kid may struggle to navigate arguments for a number of reasons—lack of self-awareness, inability to regulate their emotions, fear of standing out or standing up to others, or a general lack of confidence, just to name a few. Though applying some of the tools they’ll learn about healthy arguments may be harder in this phase, the conversation is planting seeds that will help them face conflict in a healthy way as they grow and mature.


Does your kid have a point of view that’s different than your own? This week, start a dialogue with them about that subject. Give them a chance to share their point of view without debate, correction, or argument from you. Your job here is to simply listen!


Work together to create a list of rules for how your family will argue in your home. Consider healthy things you want to do or say in conflict, as well as things that you want to avoid that will escalate or make a conflict worse. Post that list of rules somewhere your family can see, and refer to it often as a reminder for how you hope to face conflict in your home.


Come up with a code word that everyone in your family can use to pause during an argument. When the conversation is getting heated or the conflict is moving in an unhealthy direction, any member of your family can use the code word, indicating that it’s time to take a time out and give everyone a break to compose themselves before coming back to the conversation. 


Take time to ask your kid how you can better communicate with them, especially during an argument or conflict. Do your best to listen and try to apply some of what they’re telling you the next time you’re frustrated or on the verge of fighting with them.

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