As you start the school year, you may be feeling like your family doesn’t understand your decision to pursue home education. Or it may be your friends that are questioning it. Or the school you made the decision to depart from. Some will openly challenge and judge you. Others will do so silently.
You will find that a handful will wholeheartedly trust and support you. (Nurture those relationships, they have great value.)
Keep your eye on the ball. Don’t engage the naysayers. How can any of us know what it's like to walk in another person’s shoes? The only skillful (and soulful) response when people are not supportive is to not take the bait. Practice seeing what’s good in them.
Cultivate faith in yourself. Let go of the rest. There is a lot of work to do.
You will hear it all. That your children won’t know how to socialize. That the kind of socialization they are getting is not enough, or not the right kind. That they will become overly attached to you. That you don’t have enough of “your own thing” going on. That you are depriving them. That they need more activities, or those of a different kind. That they need mean peers and mean teachers to teach them about the world, and to build resilience. That you are not educated enough to educate them. Some criticism will come from people you deeply love and respect, and it will sting. Some will come from complete strangers and you might find yourself laughing at the absurdity of it all.
The list could go on forever. In the short time we have been homeschooling I have developed the following response:
Thank you, but I’ve got this. My husband and I know what's best for our son, we know what's best for our family, and he is not your responsibility. He is ours.
I trust my life and how it unfolds. As a result, I don’t take any of these ultimately well-meaning offerings personally. You don’t have to, either.
Good luck this year.
You’ve got this!