I don't know if this fits here, but I couldn't find a better place. I have raised my daughter with attachment parenting principles (babywearing, co-sleeping, extended breastfeeding, and so on), and value my connection with her above anything else. Her father and I essentially separated when she was about 1 1/2, but continued living under the same roof for financial reasons. Now, at almost 6, she also has a step-father, from my new relationship. She is happy with the arrangement, and loves being both at my home and her biological father's home.
I haven't been to work since she was born, and she has never been in daycare, nor really been left in anyone else's care for any length of time except for preschool (roughly 6 hours a week), and kindergarten last year. She is very close with each of her parents, but she and I have a different bond, as we have spent almost all of our time together. Kindergarten went fine, being only 2 1/2 hours a day. She had a great teacher, and enjoyed herself a lot.
Now that she has started grade one, she misses me tremendously, and desperately wants to be home-schooled. Prior to her beginning kindergarten, I quite seriously considered home-schooling, but then, for a variety of reasons, opted for public school. Surely she will get used to it as time goes on, but I'm not sure that she is ready for school right now. When I drop her off, she cries, and then goes in, sometimes having me escort her to her classroom and get her settled in. This morning, she told me that it's just day after day, being away from home, and desperately wanted me to take her back home. It took me over an hour of being with her first in the class and then in the hallway before she agreed to stay. And that was only after I told her that we could see how it goes until lunch, and that her teacher could call me if it really wasn't going well. Prior to leaving, she was clinging desperately to me, and had I left earlier, I would have literally had to peel her off of me and tie her down to prevent her from following me out the door. I don't want to do that to her, so I stayed with her until she could go into class on her own. She was still crying, but did go in by herself. I'm tortured, and have discussed homeschooling with her father, who is firmly against it. When I talk about valuing the family relationship time, and not being sure that it is a good thing for her to be away from home for 6 1/2 hours a day at this point, he looks at me like I'm crazy. Her step father supports me in the idea of homeschooling, but without her father's agreement, it just isn't going to happen. I am confident, in spite of her reaction at parting, that she has a secure attachment with me. I think (and have also read at some point), that her reluctance to part is largely because she is not used to it since we have been together almost exclusively. I'm concerned what walking away from a desperate, crying child is doing to our attachment, and to her, emotionally. I'm concerned that she just isn't ready for school yet. She says she loves school, and when I told her that if we kept her out for a year or more to homeschool, she may be unable to return to her same school again, she cried. She loves school, she desperately misses me, and I'm afraid she feels betrayed when I have to leave her there crying.
I need some advice or thoughts or shared experiences, or something. I need to connect with someone who also values their attachment to their children. I don't know what to do. The views of those who don't place any value on attachment just don't cut it in this situation, and unfortunately, that seems to be who I am surrounded by.