Minding my own business. There's a radical concept for this country.
I was supposed to write something defending the practice of home schooling. I could write something out that is long and detailed, justifying why it's okay for me to do that, why you shouldn't assume certain things about my character, parenting style or politics.
But truth be told, I am kind of sick of it.
If you had any idea how many closets I have come out of in my old age--I guess it gets sort of old after a while, trying to calm people down who make a big deal about every silly thing.
Whenever someone challenges you about some aspect of your life [whether this challenge is justified or not] they are telling you to prove yourself to them. They are asking you, if you are worthy to exercise and own your own power and creativity.
I think though, that you get to a certain age, where you stop caring if people think you are worthy. I mean what are they going to do about it even if you aren't the best specimen [hypothetically speaking]? What will they do to you when you [inevitably] fail to achieve perfection in their eyes?
Are they going to shame you and ostracize you? Big whoop. Secular homeschoolers in some areas are already ostracized by some of the more extreme religious home schoolers. So any attempt by people left of center will simply be more. Nothing new, just more and nothing worthy of anything more than an eye roll and a deep sigh. [great! this again!]
What does that prove other than some Lefties and Righties share some unattractive and immature behavioral traits? It is reminiscent of those 2nd grade school yard taunts: "I'll show you! If you don't live like I want you to--I will tell everyone not to like you!"
To which I reply: Choose your Battles Wisely.
I just feel like I am beating a dead horse. I can't force anyone to open their mind. The information is out there--pros and cons, good stories, not so good stories. You don't need me or anyone else to spoon feed you on the particulars.
And I feel like the horse being beaten. I am the parent, and I know what needs to be accomplished with respect to this issue, and individual disapproval, emotional and verbal abuse will have little to no effect on my decisions to home school given the circumstances.
I feel like I am constantly telling people to: "Trust me I am a woman."
In the military it was: "you can trust me to do my job as a man's equal."
In the legislature it is: "You can trust me with a loaded uterus and ovaries--and you can trust me with contraception and the freedom to be a sexual being."
When I was pregnant--it was: "You can trust me to pick my own method of birth and my own birth attendants. I don't need you restraining me and bullying me into certain procedures."
When I had the babies, it was: "You can trust me to breast feed my children in public and semi-public places. You can trust me with my own mammary glands!"
And now I feel like I have to convince people to trust my parenting skills? That I have to convince them that I have made and will make, efficacious, educational decisions that mitigate or cancel out the harmful effects of a broken and battered public school system that has been pock marked and crippled by ideological warfare for the past 30 years.
Can you trust me with a fork? I might poke my eye out!
I guess I am just tired of the ridiculousness of it all. What feels like--constant attacks on home schooling parents, based on rumor and hyperbole and wild imaginings.
Other than [NOT] doing things--educating our children the way that you would educate your children, other than being different while being *visible--what did we ever do to deserve all this criticism?
And I know that *coming out as a home schooler isn't going to make me popular with a lot of folks right now.
Wow--never felt that before! So let me just throw a match on this pile of oily rags and say the following:
The religious home schoolers out there, are not as bad as you think. You might not like their curriculum, or the church they go, to or the people they vote for, but--they care about their children and they express that care through affection and diligence.
I know you want to imagine them all as three headed monsters who live in militia compounds and beat their children with spiked clubs--but that is not the truth. Whatever I might personally think of their ideology--the ones that I have met and observed appear to be good parents, and [and I know this will shock you] their children were thriving in terms of personal development as well as benefiting from a solid educational foundation in the basics.
At the end of the day, we are all citizens together. And we have voted with our feet. I personally have exercised the option to place my children in a healthier and more comprehensive, educational environment, and we have done so without taking resources away from the public school districts [because we still pay property taxes].
So instead of criticizing us FOR voting with our feet, why not ask why we felt the need to do so?
What could change the scenario so that those factors are turned from negatives to positives?
You are saying that we have to prove ourselves worthy as parent-educators, but many failed to grasp the most basic fact, that our schools failed to prove themselves worthy of our children.