My sister-in-law just found out that we will be homeschooling our ds(6 yr.) instead of sending him back to PS for first grade. She called up dh and chewed him out and told him that she thought it was dumb. I know that her reaction is really from not knowing anything about homeschooling and wanting her nephew to be okay. What I'm wondering is how have any of you handled negative comments from family and friends. How did you get them to understand your decision and keep the peace
Not many people in our family know of our decision yet, so I know we will have more of this to deal with.
Brandoula, welcome! This is a tough issue! I'm not sure there is any easy way to convince family members regarding homeschooling if they are not willing to learn. It is really hard to break through the paradigm that public school is the only way to learn.
You may try opening a dialogue with your SIL to figure out what it is exactly that she opposes about homeschooling. You could always offer to lend her books if she is open to learning more.
Most of all I would try to remain confident in your decision and trust that she will come around. Have you found some other homeschoolers to connect with? It may help if you are feeling a bit alienated from the family. I don't know if this helps but I am glad that you have come here for support!
BTW, I grew up in Oak Harbor! How are things in beautiful LaConner?
Here is a snippet from www.californiahomeschool.net
that I thought may help:
How can I deal with irate
relatives and friends?
Begin by finding out why they are so irate. Their defensiveness might stem from the belief that your choice to homeschool is an unspoken criticism of their decision not to do so. Therefore, it is wise to avoid criticizing public education. Focus rather on your positive reasons for homeschooling, and emphasize the individuality of your choice. Consider also that their criticism might stem from loving concern. Caring friends and family want the best for your children, just as you do. In this instance educating them about the success of homeschooling might convert them into allies for your new venture.
My philosophy is if they are truly seeking to be informed then I share. If they are just yelling, calling me names or insisting that I'm stupid then I just tell then this is the way it is. Period. I'm not asking for permission from you. Some people (even family) don't understand where their opinion matters.
Sorry, I don't have alot of tolerance for being abused by name calling.