I figured out why being around other hs'ers makes me feel awful (update #36) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I thought I was just comparing myself, and seeing what Im not...or something like that. Today I went to a hs'ing moms house...we had an awesome time...2 other families came over...we made stone soup and traced kids on paper and drew in the organs...neat stuff..right?

The whole time I felt sad....and almost wanted to cry. My kids were happy, everyone was having a great time.

I puzzled over my weird reaction, and why I feel so bad when Im with homeschoolers...and it hit me.

My heart...its simply not in it. :
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#2 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:20 PM
 
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I'm sorry you feel so sad. So what's up?, you said you had a great wonderful time, what is it that your heart isn't into?
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#3 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Homeschooling. My heart just isnt into homeschooling. Sitting there drawing organs on the outline of my ds's body drove me bonkers....doing projects, keeping records, staying on top of things...teaching in general...I just dont like it.

We tried unschooling and being relaxed...it does not work for us...it was worse.

Im asking myself WHY on Earth AM I doing this? IS it my dream...or is it best for my dc? CAN I give them the education they deserve? Can I handle I all this togetherness and facilitating their learning? Can I stay on top of their interests and help them explore them.
It is wearing me out.

Yet, I dont think I can actually put my eldest in school...I dont think I can take that plunge...and part of it is because I dont want to hear my family members tell me they are happy I did that. How crazy is that?

But, I wonder if it would be better to have ds go to school, and then maybe I would have the energy to do all the neat stuff.
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#4 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:28 PM
 
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You sound overwhelmed. Wishing you well & hope you sort your feelings out.

~Marie : Mom to DS(11), DS(10), DD(8), DD(4), DD(2), & Happily Married to DH 12 yrs.!
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#5 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:32 PM
 
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#6 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:33 PM
 
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well, I don't know how old your dc are, so I don't know how much teaching or record keeping you need, but I agree with you, the day to day can be tiresome, esp when we are trying to make it feel like "school", kwim? I don't know how long you've been hsing, but I do know it can take a while to find your own ryhthm, find what works for you. Were your kids in school before? Transitions can be hard, for kids and adullts too.
I've been hsing since my oldest was 4, so to me, its all we all know, and I wouldn't trade it. I do feel like you have to passionately want it, cause it is intense. I mean that in a good way, intense on the interaction is what I mean.
How do your kids feel?
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#7 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:36 PM
 
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Mama to 9 so far:Mother of Joey (20), Dominick (13), Abigail (11), Angelo (8), Mylee (6), Delainey (3), Colton (2) and Baby 8 and Baby 9 coming sometime in July 2013.   If evolution were true, mothers would have three arms!

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#8 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:37 PM
 
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My kids are very young, but I expect to home school and I have a definite worry about the possibility of this same problem... just not being "into it" enough. I hope you feel at peace with whatever decision you end up making.

Jenna ~ mommy to Sophia Elise idea.gif  (1/06), Oliver Matthew  blahblah.gif (7/07) and Avery Michael fly-by-nursing1.gif(3/10)

 

dizzy.gif Wading slowly and nervously into this homeschooling thing.

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#9 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My oldest is 7, I dont make things too schooly. My dc have never been to any sort of school...I have been with them 24/7 since birth, aside from a few dates and a weeks worth of couple only vacations dh and I took. I used to be excited about hs'ing. Heck...a large part of my identity is "homeschooling mom" its what I do.
My dh DOES work a lot...generally 70-80 hrs a week.

I dont want to be apathetic about my dc's education.
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#10 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:53 PM
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Honestly, I would not be really into the day you described, either... when Rainy was that age, I tended to leave her with mothers who were into it, and come by later to pick her up (and I did other stuff that they weren't so into, like more outdoorsy physical stuff, so it worked out).

Can you homeschool around the things you enjoy, rather than the more traditional school assignments? I don't mean unschooling necessarily, but just whatever you like... take the kids out in the woods to draw plants and pick some for tea-making, or read books about Zanzibar and plan imaginary trups around the city, or whatever...

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#11 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 03:58 PM
 
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I thought I was just comparing myself, and seeing what Im not...or something like that. Today I went to a hs'ing moms house...we had an awesome time...2 other families came over...we made stone soup and traced kids on paper and drew in the organs...neat stuff..right?
Thats not my cup of tea either.

But not to fear, kids come out great even when parents aren't into that type of stuff. My parents weren't but they involved me in whatever they were doing. I had a blast helping and learning from them.
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#12 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 04:01 PM
 
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Sometimes we do need to do what's right for our kids even when it's not what we particularly want for ourselves. But we also can't be martyrs and do what's bad for ourselves for the sake of ideals. It can be really, really hard to find that balance sometimes.

Please, try to listen to your own heart, and listen to your kids' needs, and try not to let other people's expectations factor into your decisions. It's just as bad to put your kids in school because of outside pressure as it is to keep them home "just to prove to my Mom that I can do this."

You can be an involved mom without homeschooling- volunteering at the school for various activities, etc., and doing fun stuff after school and on weekends. There are also ways to make HSing less overwhelming- such as purchasing a curriculum that requires less in the way of projects and "time spent teaching"

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19, Hannah, 18, and Jack, 12
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#13 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 05:08 PM
 
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Honestly i dont feel comfortable around other hs mom's....they are on top of it all..they just went here and did this...and got this cerificate..yadada...i dont fit into that type of hs....we do our own thing here....which ever way the child leans i lean....no pushing or proding...maybe sitting back and trying to relax...cutting back on your expectations of hs...i'm not sure what to say but big abrazos-hugs

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#14 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 05:12 PM
 
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I'm not sure how you define your heart being in it? What would that look like to you?

Everyone has their own way of HSing. For my cousin it means 5 million outings and tons of scheduled things. For me it means hanging out and going with the flow. If I defined her way of doing as the right way I'd think I wasn't doing enough.

Homeschool to me doesn't mean that I wake up every day raring to go and excited with a ton of plans. I means I relax, enjoy my freedom and the ability to live spur of the moment even if that means I don't do a darned thing that day.
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#15 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 05:18 PM
 
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I'm not sure how you define your heart being in it? What would that look like to you?
I was thinking the same way...If you are familiar with the temperaments at all...being in a group of women it might appear that the happy, social butterfly sanguines are so happy and into things, as well as the get things done quickly and well cholerics...and then the melancholics and phlegmatics hanging back, melancholics would be the ones cleaning and the phlegmatics sitting there not caring about how dirty their kiddos were getting wondering when snack is. I would say, don't compare! But I'm not so sure that is the whole picture here...are you feeling depressed other than being with other homeschoolers?
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#16 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 05:20 PM
 
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See, I personally love stuff like that. BUT, everyone has different callings and gifts, and talents. Homeschooling by way of arts and crafts and home ec is NOT everyones cup of tea. And that is OK Math is personally not my cup of tea. I may be bored to tears as my kids get older, and I will have to rely on people that are good at math to help me. I think this is where community can really come in handy. You don't have to like everything your kids do for them to learn and have a good time. Let someone else take the reigns for a few hours.

Due with number 5 in August. We do all that crunchy stuff.
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#17 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 05:33 PM
 
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Definitely look into your neighborhood and see if there is anything to help with. I know we have charter schools in our area. We are technically and legally homeschoolers, but we go through the charter school, so if there is a class offered there I can put my kids in it. Perhaps if there is something like that, then for those subjects that perhaps you aren't so into, you can find them a class. If there is a museum near you, they sometimes run classes. Umm, community centers or local colleges will also often run classes for children. Or maybe you can just find another mom who can help you out. I have a hard time with the hands-on stuff. I think part of it is because I went to ps and while I got a great education (up until 8th grade, anyway), I don't remember being particularly hands on. But my daughter needs the hands on stuff. This is our third year hsing and I still struggle with doing the right things with her.

Crystal
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#18 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 05:44 PM
 
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Have you considered that maybe you are under emotional distress, depressed, something like that? Is this feeling all the time or just when you're with others. If it is just when you are with others then maybe you haven't found friends that mesh with your style. I like DAR's idea of dropping you child off sometime (if the other mothers are cool with that) and coming back later.

I always get a little depressed in the summer when I'm home all day with the boys and not teaching (I teach 2-3 days a week at the university). Having a little bit of an outlet where I"m doing what I want to do is all it takes to help me. Maybe there is a an outlet for you too? Arrange for someone to watch the kids two mornings a week (or let them hang out with another homeschooling family) and do something you want to do.

Just a thought.
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#19 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 05:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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For me having my heart in something means Im dedicated, Im committed, I know it is the best thing to be doing.
The things we did today...I remember being in elementary school and doing those same things...I loved it and they are two fond memories I have.

Am I depressed other times? Not as bad as I had been for the past 3 yrs...i have a mood disorder and it is well managed now. Which is another thing that causes me to doubt homeschooling being the best idea. Is it added stress that I dont need...will it cause my dc to resent me?

Dh and I strongly desire for our dc to have a well rounded liberal arts education. It is non-negotiable. Our school work takes 2 hours max and I rarely do projects. The kids take to it happily, they like what we are doing, they complain when we are done. I would continue on, but at that point I am DONE.

If we had a Classical school here...I would enroll them in a heartbeat...but we dont...and that is why we homeschool. I wouldnt be conflicted at all. There are some Catholic schools I wouldnt hestitate to put my dc in...but we are focusing on getting out of debt, and they arent accepting any more students.

I do like being with my kids....but I think all the togetherness really wears on me...and then I wind up doing bare minimums because of all the interaction. Yes, I do tend to be introverted...but I also have a strong need to socialize. :

My dh also works 60-80 hrs a week. We go on a lunch date on Tuesdays...and that is fun...but Im with the kids all the time, and handle all the household responsibilities. When dh is home, I want him to be with the dc...not mowing the grass.
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#20 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 05:57 PM
 
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Mama, I totally hear you. You sound a LOT like me. Have you always felt this way, or have you been feeling more burnt out lately? Is it possible for you to get someone to sit with the kids for a few hours one day a week and focus on yourself for awhile? I know this is the one thing I sorely lack in my life, and I'm really needing it.

to you. I don't have answers for you, except to say that you have to do what you have to do. We're in a truly mediocre school district, so my choice is pretty clear-cut, but if we were in even a slightly better one...well, I just don't know. Take care of yourself!

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#21 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 06:57 PM
 
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I think it's totally normal to sometimes question whether you are doing the right thing. I don't know anything in life that doesn't sometimes feel like it's the wrong thing. I know I get it anytime I am feeling overwhelmed, hormonal or depressed. I'm not saying you are feeling that way now, just that I have. There have been times in the last 17 years of HSing where I couldn't sleep because I felt totally overwhelmed with the responsibility and felt like I was not doing it good enough. Usually it just takes a reality check with my partner or BFF who are supportive and able to remind me that doubts are normal and part of being human and yes my dd is growing into a wonderful young woman.

You are the only one that can decide if you should really be doing something else, or if it's just normal transitory doubts or unrealistic expectations.

I do think that often times here, we are too quick to suggest changing things when someone just may be having a bad day, rough week or whatever.
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#22 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 07:21 PM
 
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Maybe you miss work? Sometimes I miss work.

I know some people offerred that making stone soup and such was too schooly and maybe you need to do something different, but that doesn't seem schooly to me. But that's another thread.
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#23 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 08:39 PM
 
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My MIL recently had 5 of the 8 grandkids (the youngest 3 are 6 months and younger, so not interested) out in the horse field making stone soup over a fire. They loved it. Not something I would've thought to do, but I ate some of the soup and it was wonderful.

Crystal
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#24 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 10:06 PM
 
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Yeah, all the togetherness can be intense. Esp when they are young, like yours are. My 10 yr old can do so much independantly now, reading, designing her web site, writing scripts for plays. My "littles" are what wear me out. Maybe thats what your feeling too, that when kids are so young, they need to be with us pretty much 24/7 and it can be overwhelming. I used to think, gee, I wish school was just like an hour or so a day, or only 3 days a week, instead of the 7 or 8 hrs every day it would be if I enrolled them.
See, when you are hsing them now for those couple of hours, you have to be right by their side pretty much, reading to them ect, but it won't always be like that. Pretty soon they will be more and more independant. Trying to do all the household chores so your dh's time off is truly time off is a bit much, imo. My dh actually mows with the kids, they take turns. I have enuf to do with hsing and cooking and laundry. Give yourself a bit of a break. I think you are expecting a lot of yourself.
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#25 of 47 Old 08-29-2007, 10:08 PM
 
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FWIW I am realizing that I don't enjoy the co-op/group learning thing. I enjoy purely social visits but getting together to do planned learning activities bugs me. : I'm not sure exactly why-- the moms are nice, but the whole vibe bugs me, even if they're doing things I would do with my kids at home.

I sign my kids up for drop-off classes, but I don't get together with families for learning stuff, and I don't teach.

Sorry you're going through a rough time. I hope you can figure out a path that feels right.

ZM
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#26 of 47 Old 08-30-2007, 12:33 AM
 
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what is stone soup?

i find that i don;t feel like doing social activities when i feel uninspired about myself. you should consider finding a little time to do something for yourself and see if that helps.
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#27 of 47 Old 08-30-2007, 02:45 AM
 
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There is a book called Stone Soup. Your library should have it.

Crystal
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#28 of 47 Old 08-30-2007, 04:52 AM
 
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what is stone soup?
Stone Soup


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#29 of 47 Old 08-30-2007, 10:20 AM
 
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cool!
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#30 of 47 Old 08-30-2007, 10:50 AM
 
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I know how you feel. For the past 2 years, I've felt pressured to homeschool using the methods a friend uses. Any time I bought a book or mentioned something that didn't fall into those parameters, she'd jump on me.

Finally, I just quit mentioning specifics and started doing what works best for me and my dd and I feel SO much better! I just didn't find important the things she thought were tantamount. Once I stayed true to my own objectives and goals, life got much better. I may not have some fabulous stories to tell about how my young kids have read Shakespeare or that they're well-versed in history before they hit junior high, but dd is solid in math and grammar and is enjoying school more.

I'm not sure exactly what is making you feel unsettled, but I hope you can work it out with yourself and feel better.
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