I love homeschooling. Let me say that again, I love homeschooling. That being said, there is always a downside, a ying to a yang, a left to a right. For every Pinterest pretty moment, I can name at least one not so shining moment.
So while I love homeschooling, and I choose to homeschool, and I believe it is the right thing for us, there have also been many moments where I questioned that decision, where I wanted to send them all packing on the bus in the morning. Let me tell you about those…
Reasons I Have Wanted to Quit Homeschooling
1. Lack of Focus
I have a child with ADD possibly ADHD. One of the reasons I chose to keep him home is because I knew I could do better for him, and I didn’t want to medicate if I didn’t have to. So yes, sometimes (many times), focus can be an issue with him. But here is the kicker, it is more a problem with his little sister because she is simply a dreamer and a stubborn independent who easily falls off on tangents!
2. Siblings Fighting
Oh the fighting! The relentlessness bickering and nit picking over the stupidest things! How many times have I asked them to – “Think before you speak” or “If you don’t have anything nice to say…” or “Is that any of your business?”
One complains about the other making noise or their music is too loud in their headset, and then turns around to do the exact same thing! (And totally oblivious to how they could possibly be doing something as annoying as their sibling!)
3. Teen Tude
Not only do I have one teen in the house, but now I have TWO! Sometimes the attitude feels like it is pushing me out of the house! The eye rolling, the snide tone, the “yeah mom, okay mom” just to put me off! I get so frustrated feeling as though I am always the bad guy, no matter how much I try to do for them.
And yet I love them and continue to homeschool my teenagers because I know it is what is best for them. (As for how they feel, neither of them have a desire to go to school. My oldest in particular has always been adamant, even when her friends have cast their doubts, about how much better her life is being homeschooled.)
4. Concern Over Friends
I worry sometimes about their friends. While they each have their own niche of friends I often feel that homeschool mommy guilt of, “Maybe they would be better off in school?” Then I think seriously? With all the hate, bullying, and inappropriate behavior! My son gets a daily dose of it just in the swim team locker room and that is enough!
5. Worrying About the Norm
The norm. What is the norm anyways? I know that most people around us don’t see us as they norm. Many of the kids try to convince my to go to school, or tell them what they are missing out on, but will that make them normal? Or better yet, do I want them to be this so called normal? Nevertheless I worry about the decision we made so many years ago and if I have kept them from a chance to be “normal”.
6. Completion of Work
Or more apply titled, “The In-completion of Work.” I get so tired of trying to keep them on task. From the littlest to the biggest I am always the task master (and in turn the bad guy) from trying to keep them on task to complete their work. This stems back with my younger ones to the lack of focus and fighting with each other.
With both my high school and middle school student we work on teaching time management and working with their own planners. My goal is for independence in high school (which by the way my teen does brilliantly – most of the time.) It is those other times when I find myself pulling out my hair!
7. Sole Responsibility
Sometimes being the sole provider of your children’s education, for their entire life can feel daunting and overwhelming. There are inevitably outside questions about if I am qualified or not, let alone the self doubt over if I am doing their education justice or not.
8. The Need for Personal Space
If my children were in school, we would have some space from each other. Instead there are days (heck there are weeks) where we all feel like we can’t get enough distance from each other. Either the kids are antsy from the bickering and toe stepping, or I am feeling like I just need 5 minutes in the house with no noises, no one calling my name or needing to tell me a story or complain about their sibling.
9. The Paperwork
Argh! The paperwork! I am a dot my “i’s” cross my “t’s” kind of girl so I am knowingly aware that I possibly create more paperwork for myself than is necessary. I strive to keep good records from daily tracking to high school planning. Some of it is out of my control as well. We live in New York State where the homeschooling regulations require more paperwork than most states.
10. Constant Taxi Service
When your kids are in school they most likely get bused to and from. When they get older and play sports they stay after and you only drive once to pick them up. When they have games they are bused with their team. In our home, all our children play competitive sports. Therefore we are driving 3 children both to and from a practice almost everyday of the week, with many days where we could not do it with just one person, we need both of us to run the evening sports schedule.
While sometimes our time in the car together can be fabulous with great conversations or singing, other times I just want to be home and not traipsing all over.
Here’s the thing though, for each and every one of these reasons why I have wanted to quit homeschooling, I can name at least one reason why I love homeschooling.