By Annika Nist, Age 12

When I began my 6th grade year, I was shocked at all of the foul language people were throwing around. On my first day, I heard someone cuss 7 times in a row. When I went home, I just threw myself onto my bed and thought, Why are people like this? In elementary school, if someone cussed, all of the yard duties would immediately be told and the offender would be sent to the principal’s office. In middle school, no one even was yelled at for cussing. If you are like me and feel that this is unnecessary, be prepared for all of the profanity that comes with middle school. Here are three methods for dealing with this annoyance:

Method #1: Avoidance

Avoidance can be the best strategy for some, but can be difficult for others. Middle schoolers are very loud, at least most of the profane ones. This is harder to block out than someone trying to get you to tell them the answers to a worksheet, which would be very quiet. You can try listening to music, and this helps me on the bus. However, it is very unlikely that you would be allowed to in class. Most experts in this skill just try to eat lunch in areas where there are not as many of the yellers. This is useful, as you can just talk with your friends and eat lunch in as much peace as you can get in middle school.

Method #2: Opposing

This method can be useful in some situations, such as if an innocent classmate is being verbally harassed by an older student. However, I strongly discourage this in less urgent situations, as if you do this, you will end up stopping someone constantly in the hallways(late to class!), and become a target for bullies. I wish this was a better world where people could be talked down by peers, however, that world has yet to come. I want to use this method constantly, but if I did, I would end up as a common target for bullies on the higher end of the middle school hierarchy and be useless anyway.

Method #3: A Combination

This method is the one I use. A balance, including both previous methods. I try to distance myself from the most profane students, but will still stand up to them if an urgent situation arises. I listen to music on the bus, but quietly rebel against my busmates who scream, cuss, and shriek constantly. This is also considered the best method among most of my friends, who feel the same way I do about this issue.

I hope this advice will do you well in your educational career, not just in middle school, but hopefully in high school and beyond. Just remember-safety is the most important thing here. Never willingly put yourself into a situation where you could be harmed in your efforts of dealing with profanity.