Thursday, August 27, 2009

Lack of Family Support - Homeschooling

One of the hardest things we face with our homeschooling is a lack of support from our families. My family is big on education. My mother has a doctorate in Education. School is very important for them. It is very important for me too. I want my kids to have a great education. My mother says she isn't worried about my ability to teach, it's the socialization. Of course, she does check on how they're doing in school regularly. I have tried to inform her that my children receive adequate socialization. We are involved in scouts and attend Church and Church related activities regularly. We are involved with a co-op and "socialize" with more than 100 kids there. Not sure what more she thinks we need.

Then there's my sisters. One has been against homeschooling from the start with no real reason. My other sister decided just recently that she is now against homeschooling. Her arguments are not as well constructed. Her most recent being that my children will not know how to sit in a classroom. Even my children laughed at that one. They sit in classrooms, just not for 8 hours a day.

My in-laws have always been against homeschooling as well. They do not argue with us. They merely ignore the subject. They have said, "We made our mistakes, you are entitled to make yours." Understanding my mother-in-law, that comment actually doesn't bother me.

So, what do you do if you have no support from family members? When my family calls and offers up the latest argument, I just inform them the kids are doing well and move on. I try not to let them bother me. Of course it does some, just not as much as it used to. We have found our support elsewhere. As I said, we belong to a co-op with about 50 families. We have made many friends through it and use them for our primary support. There are several who home school at our Church as well. My other support is online. There are a lot of support groups online for us. My favorite is THL, otherwise known as The Homeschool Lounge. It is an excellent place to find support and information on all homeschooling matters.

My advice to those who, like me, lack family support is to find that support elsewhere. If you look around, you will likely find others who share your desire to educate your children at home. You can look for groups or individuals locally or you can look online at the many groups available. Just don't let your family make the decision for you. Your children are your responsibility. As a word of caution though, your spouse's opinion is important and don't lump it into the same category with the rest of your family.

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