My decision to hs was not based on my own ps experiences. I was miserable in school, but I believed that everyone else was also. I was bored and not at all challenged by the work. I never studied for tests, and did most reports, papers, short stories, etc. the night before they were due. I never took notes. I was basically a "B" student with a few A's and an occassional "C" thrown in. My teachers all said I could be a straight "A" student if only I'd "apply" myself. I could never figure out the point.
I had casual friends from all different "cliches" but I did not align myself with any particular group.
By the time I had children of my own, I'd convinced myself that times had changed, educational philosophies had changed, teachers were different, etc. etc. and it was possible for my children to have a different experience than I had had. It WAS different for them...just not better.
As for the "socialization" question---My children function quite well in the company of others. They hold social conversations at parties with adults, they play all the usual games with other children. They discuss health and other issues with the chiropractor, dentist, my midwife, etc. They ask clerks for assistance in stores, museums, etc. and complete their own transactions in stores and banks. They make both social and consumer phone calls. We have debates about current events, religion, laws, and the morality of producing easily broken toys.
There ARE social aspects of school that they would (did) find intolerable. Physical fighting between other children, threats to their bodies or belongings, punishments, and herding--(all children must stand in a line, all children must be quiet, all children must have their hands at their sides, all children must go to the rest rooms at the same time, etc.) are some of the things that they just couldn't live with. They have a keen sense of what is fair and will not hesitate to speak their minds. This is often not welcome in a school setting, especially in regard to school rules. They believe that their opinions count and their ideas and comments should be respected, just as an adult's are. Again, this is not the way the school hierarchy works.
So, yeah, my homeschooled children's socialization IS different than a schooled child's. That's just fine with me.