Music Discussions

I Don’t Care

i-dont-care

I Don’t Care – Ed Sheeran

Main Point: Connecting with others can be challenging, but God has created us to live in community.

Vital Info Before You Get Started: The following info should help you contextualize this very popular song so you can have a great discussion about it with your kids.

  • IMPORTANT NOTE TO PARENTS: We at The Source for Youth Ministry believe that certain elements in our youth culture can serve as good discussion jump starters with students. At the same time, we would never hope to introduce teens to a negative influence that they haven’t already encountered. This balance is a delicate one. In our experience most teens, churched and unchurched, keep pretty current with music and music videos like this one. Thanks to YouTube, MTV.com, Spotify, and iTunes, the most popular music videos and songs are free to access only a click away. If you decide to use this, do so by catering it to fit your family’s needs.
  • Born in England in 1991, Sheeran has created music since he was young. At the age of 19, he hit the top of the iTunes chart without having signed a record deal.
  • Since signing with Atlantic, Sheeran has sold millions of records, and won Grammys for hits like Thinking Out Loud (2014) and Shape of You (2017).
  • Sheeran has written with artists such as Taylor Swift and One Direction and had a cameo on the hit show Game of Thrones.
  • In 2018 he married former childhood friend Cherry Seaborn in a private ceremony.

Introducing the Song – Say Something Like This: I Don’t Care is a collaboration between Ed Sheeran and mega star Justin Bieber. It’s been described as having a breezily infectious chorus that arrives 42 seconds in, and after that, there seems no way to get it out of your head without recourse to surgery. The song touches on social anxiety, which Sheeran has previously talked about in interviews. This light hearted and fun song focuses on how being with a special someone makes them feel valued.

The Music Video: The music video can be viewed for free at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y83x7MgzWOA

Song Lyrics – I Don’t Care

I’m at a party I don’t wanna be at
And I don’t ever wear a suit and tie, yeah
Wonderin’ if I could sneak out the back
Nobody’s even lookin’ me in my eyes
And then you take my hand
Finish my drink, say, “Shall we dance?” (He**, yeah)
You know I love ya, did I ever tell ya?
You make it better like that

 Don’t think I fit in at this party
Everyone’s got so much to say (Yeah)
I always feel like I’m nobody, mmm
Who wants to fit in anyway?

 ‘Cause I don’t care when I’m with my baby, yeah
All the bad things disappear
And you’re making me feel like maybe I am somebody
I can deal with the bad nights
When I’m with my baby, yeah
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh
‘Cause I don’t care as long as you just hold me near
You can take me anywhere
And you’re making me feel like I’m loved by somebody
I can deal with the bad nights
When I’m with my baby, yeah
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh

 We at a party we don’t wanna be at
Tryna talk, but we can’t hear ourselves
Read your lips, I’d rather kiss ’em right back
With all these people all around
I’m crippled with anxiety
But I’m told it’s where I’m s’posed to be
You know what? It’s kinda crazy ’cause I really don’t mind
When you make it better like that

 Don’t think we fit in at this party
Everyone’s got so much to say, oh yeah, yeah
When we walked in, I said I’m sorry, mmm
But now I think that we should stay

 ‘Cause I don’t care when I’m with my baby, yeah
All the bad things disappear
Yeah, you’re making me feel like maybe I am somebody
I can deal with the bad nights when I’m with my baby, yeah
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh (Oh yeah, yeah, yeah)
‘Cause I don’t care as long as you just hold me near
You can take me anywhere
And you’re making me feel like I’m loved by somebody
I can deal with the bad nights when I’m with my baby, yeah
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh (No)

 I don’t like nobody but you, it’s like you’re the only one here
I don’t like nobody but you, baby, I don’t care
I don’t like nobody but you, I hate everyone here
I don’t like nobody but you, baby, yeah

 ‘Cause I don’t care (Don’t care)
When I’m with my baby, yeah (Oh yeah)
All the bad things disappear (Disappear)
And you’re making me feel like maybe I am somebody (Maybe I’m somebody)
I can deal with the bad nights (with the bad nights)
When I’m with my baby, yeah
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh (oh yeah, yeah, yeah)
‘Cause I don’t care as long as you just hold me near (me near)
You can take me anywhere (anywhere, anywhere)
And you’re making me feel like I’m loved by somebody
(I’m loved by somebody, yeah, yeah, yeah)
I can deal with the bad nights
When I’m with my baby, yeah
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh

Three Questions to Ask in the Car (with thoughts to dive deeper with your kids):

Q: What do you think he means when he says he’s crippled with anxiety? Have you ever felt that way?
A: Focuses on the song lyrics making it non-threatening and opens the door to talk about anxiety and how it might impact your teenagers.

Q: Why do you think people have a hard time connecting with others?
A: Sidesteps asking them personally about how they connect, but reveals insight into their perspective, and could open the door to a deeper discussion.

Q: Do you think people your age are often lonely? Why do you think that’s true?
A: Seems unlikely they will say no, but either way it opens the door to talking about the impact of technology and other factors on their generation.

Where to Take It from Here: Wherever it feels natural. If these questions lead to a longer discussion on the topic, wonderful!  (There is a guide just after this paragraph that helps you do just that.) If your kids are barely uttering grunts, don’t get discouraged – the next time it feels right, try out another song. Keep engaging them.

For Deeper Discussion:
(If your kids seem into diving in deeper and looking at what the Bible has to say on the subject, the following discussion guide can help take you there.)

Want help getting your teenager engaged in conversation? CLICK HERE for a helpful article from our “Parenting Help” page providing you with 3 Essentials to Talking with Today’s Teens.

Transition Statement – Say Something Like This: The catchy song I Don’t Care is described fairly well by its title. Sheehan and Bieber, the songwriters, are saying they don’t care about the anxiety they feel when they are with their special someone, and based on the silly video – they seem to be saying they don’t care what others think but they are just going to have fun. In our time we are going to talk about the challenges we face in connecting with others and how God has created us to live in community.

Discussion Questions:

  1. ASK YOUR WHOLE FAMILY: If you could be British like Ed Sheeran or Canadian like Justin Bieber, which would you choose and why?
  2. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Talk about why you think you are one or the other and how you feel about going to large gatherings or parties.
  3. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: What do you think the song means when it says, “don’t think I fit in at this party, everyone’s got so much to say (Yeah), I always feel like I’m nobody, who wants to fit in anyway”?
  1. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: What does the song mean when it says, “with all these people all around, I’m crippled with anxiety”? What do you think that looks like? Have you ever felt that way? Explain your experience.
  1. ASK ALL FAMILY MEMBERS: What are some challenges people can face when trying to connect with other people? What are some things that make connecting difficult for you personally?
  1. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: Why do you think God desires for us to live in community with others?

Read the following passage:

Romans 12:16
Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.

  1. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: Read Romans 12:9-21. What are some things this passage says about how to act in relationships?
  1. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: What do you think it means to live in harmony with one another?
  1. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: If a person does not like large groups of people, what are some ways they can still connect with other people?
  1. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: Verse 16 says, “do not be proud.” What are some ways people are “proud” in relationships?
  1. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: What do you think the verse means when it describes people “of low position”? What does this look like in your world?
  1. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: Would you agree or disagree with the statement that people are lonelier now then any point in history?  Explain why you think the way you do.
  1. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: How has technology changed the way we connect with other people?
  2. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: In the song, their significant other makes them feel loved. What are some ways followers of Jesus can practically show others love, even when it’s hard?

Wrap Up – Say Something Like This: The song I Don’t Care is light hearted but has a strong message about the value of relationships. During our time we talked about some of the challenges we face when trying to connect with other people. We discussed the reality of God’s desire that each of us live in community. Nobody thrives alone, and God has wired us to do life with other people. Perhaps right now you have some struggles in relationships. It could be problems with existing relationships or maybe you’re dealing with loneliness. Take a few moments and do what 1 Peter 5:7 says and “cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.”

(Pause and give them a quiet moment to pray silently.)

The God who created you loves you more than you can comprehend. He meets our deepest needs and has demonstrated our value by saying those who receive Him into their lives can be called His children. He also desires that we look at people with a passion to live in harmony, to not consider ourselves above them but to demonstrate love and a willingness to enter into relationship. While we can sometimes strive for the perfect alignment in our relationships, often God calls us to care for those who might require more effort for us to connect with. Take a moment and ask God to reveal to you people He wants you to reach out to and ways you can demonstrate His love practically in relationship with others.

(Pause and give them a few moments to pray silently.)

Connecting with others can be challenging, but God has created us to live in community. Let’s be people who are willing to do the work to live in harmony with others, overcoming the barriers and demonstrating the love of Jesus to those God puts in our path. If we can embrace this and live out our faith in this way, the impact we will make cannot be overstated. In a world filled with loneliness, God is calling His people to break through and demonstrate His love, even when it’s hard.

CLOSE IN PRAYER

 

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Rob Chagdes

Rob Chagdes

Rob Chagdes is one of the pastors at Prairie Lakes Church in northern Iowa. In the years since he met Jesus as a sixteen year old, Rob has spent his life working to raise up the next generation to love God and invite others into His unending story. He spends most of his free time with his wife Leslie, their three amazing daughters, and their energetic dog Jedi. You can reach Rob at chagdeswrites@gmail.com

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