PART TWO Helping Your Kid Through Real Middle School Problems – Middle School Makeover: Improving the Way You and Your Child Experience the Middle School Years


Helping Your Kid Through Real Middle School Problems

I hope you now have a greater appreciation for your middle schooler’s developing brain, quest for an independent identity, unique communication needs, and ability to solve her own problems. As parents we can either fight against these universal changes or accept them. In the best-case scenario, we embrace and celebrate the changes our kids are going through. This is the foundation for being a happier parent, and having a happier kid, through the tricky middle school years.

What follows are the thirteen scenarios that parents ask me about most frequently. They are common middle school social dilemmas happening all over America—and maybe even in your own house—that cause parents and kids to get all kinds of flustered. Building on the theories of adolescent development and parenting I cover in part 1, we’ll dive deeper into what’s really happening in middle school and, through easy-to-follow, practical advice, get you unflustered in no time.

Note: If you’ve turned right to this section to find help with a problem, you should know that the most common complaint I hear is “My kid won’t tell me anything.” You won’t find that scenario in this section because it gets its very own chapter. Flip to chapter 4 if that’s your primary concern. Otherwise, onward!