I did not believe that everyone that I loved would understand my decision to home school, so I did not go into this with a delusional sense of expectation. However, hearing what family has to say and how they truly feel about your choice to home school, can be pretty hurtful. It is easier to hear and take the criticisms from strangers, than it is from those who are closest to you. The reason for this, is because, “you” the parent are handling every facet of your child’s educational development, and anyone with children, whether you home school or not, understands what this means, but just in case you do not, let me go through a run down of what this means:
*You are raising an introvert, extrovert, or both
*If both, this means you may have to teach in several different ways to meet the needs of your home schooled children. If you are raising one or the other, and YOU as the parent/guardian/caregiver are completely opposite of your child, you have to consider their learning needs over your own discomforts.
*New learning material and harder lessons can either mean excitement or melt downs. I experience both. Now that my 6 year old is excelling at certain areas of his education, his work load is becoming greater, and it is getting harder. Sometimes no amount of explanation or consoling from mom, actually works, so we have to ride out the melt downs until I come up with a new way to introduce an inevitably difficult topic for a 6 year old, with a work load that will only continue to increase. Even when your school days are fun, the day can still be a long one.
*Where your child is struggling, with education, emotionally, physically, there is no broken school system to blame, you are to blame….and this is the door way that criticizers can not wait to put their foot into.
So let me take a break with this list and continue on. Whenever my son acts the complete opposite of a “Step ford Child”, I hear; “Well, if he was in school he would not be this way because “they” would not put up with it.” My response; “He is in school. If he were in public school, he would be worst because rather than the teacher handling it like a “parent”….because they are not his parents and they have other kids to be attentive to, he would be reprimanded in ways that I do not agree with, or sent to the principles office.”
“I thought that home-school kids were more well-rounded.” Home school kids are still, KIDS. Even they, do not always like home work and need a break away from it. That comment, even thought, can be likened to someone who is so shocked when they find out a very HUMAN secret about a Christian, or a societal figure, who we are encouraged to only look at as, flawless.
One day I was with my family, and one of my nieces quite innocently came up to me and asked; “Do you teach science, reading, writing, etc. does he have recess and everything?” After I answered yes to all of her questions, she then responded with words of great encouragement…..”Then your a teacher!” The adults looked on with judgement and doubt. My niece went up to one of my family members and said; “Aunt Rae Rae is a teacher!” Leave it up to an adult to be the most insensitive being on planet earth. The adult went on to make one of the the most discouraging comments that I have heard thus far , since homeschooling;
“She THINKS she’s a teacher. He needs to be in school around other kids, that’s why he acts the way that he acts sometimes.”
Ouch! Right? So not only are you putting me down, but your also putting my child down.
This was said to a child, as I sat in the next room and heard the very hurtful comment being made. I felt even more isolated from family at that point. I had another family member laugh at the idea of me home schooling. No matter how often I explained to family my reasons for home schooling, they still ask the question….”What’s wrong with public schooling.
I have my reasons for home schooling. Some reasons are more personal, while others are quite obvious. But the bottom line is….it is my RIGHT.
Having people in your life with whom you can relate to, is so vital. In the world of home schooling, it can get pretty lonely if you do not. You will find yourself second guessing your decisions, even if they were based on Biblical principles. You will become unsure of yourself, and worse yet, you will become uncertain of your own child’s learning abilities and potentials, to the point that you become the stressor in their lives, and the one handing out the discouragement.
For all parents who home school, a mist the busyness of your own lives, I am proud of you all, because it is no easy walk. We have made one of the most important decisions over our children’s lives. Do not give up and/or give in to the pressures of placing your child into the public school system, not even when many of your days feel like a huge rain cloud is hovering over you, and you don’t feel like “learning” is happening. It truly is happening, and as long as you are persistent, your child will continue to flourish in all areas of their lives. Be encouraged, even when those closest to you are discouraging. You will be okay. It gets better. Not every day will be as hard as the last……I promise. Stay prayerful, loving, and in tune with your childs/rens needs.
Don’t give up! 🙂
❤ Raven Nicole`