Not sure if this is the right forum or not, so mods feel free to move...
But I am STRESSED about the possibility of sending DS to preschool or similar. He just turned 2 and LOVES other kids - the nanny/babysitter we use once a week or so usually has other clients she brings him to, when the neighbor kids are playing he always wants to join in, he gets upset when it's time to leave the park and asks, "more babies??" (anyone under Adult Age is a baby...LOL)
The problem is me. I'm a big introvert - outgoing when I have to be, but I find it exhausting. I find other children extremely exhausting. I find other parents intolerably exhausting. My 3 closest friends just threw me a baby shower for DD due next month, and there were 3 guests there... =) I just don't like people. I don't want my son to suffer from my comfort zone, but every time I start reading about "parent participation in the classroom" or even tour dates, I want to bury my head in the couch.
The other issue, too, is that my son is unusually awesome. I know everyone thinks that of their own kid, but he's an absolute sweetheart and a fast learner with a kind soul...and every kid I know in daycare or preschool comes home with bad habits, from toy hoarding to not listening when called to new fears...Granted, I know like 3 kids and they're all related to me, but it makes me incredibly nervous. DH and I want to set up something of a homeschool for our children's educations that would entail 8-10 kids in a private situation, but that entails meeting 8-10 families that want to participate, so I know I have to send him to some sort of school at some point just to meet other people. And frankly, with DD on the way, a 2 day a week preschool would be a good break so mom could get some work done (I mostly work from home) and cheaper than the babysitter. But I am in absolute terror about what he will learn there (one of the reasons we want to homeschool is that I fundamentally disagree with most educators' priorities/how things are taught), the bad side of socialization, and having to interact with all. those. other. parents. all. the. time.
Any other introverts out there in the same boat, or who lived through it? Anyone else really, really scared to let other people's influences into your child's life? I'm not a helicopter parent, I swear; it's just that everyone else he interacts with is hand-selected by us for the most part. Tossing him into a room with strangers is another ballgame...
I can understand the introvert part though, I actually do enjoy people... I just need a lot of solitude too. My eldest child is a lot like me but DS was born an intense extrovert which was quite difficult for me to deal with in the early years. He needed constant interaction and I was a frazzled mess trying to handle him. He stumbled upon a preschool in our area when he was 2 and I sent him just prior to turning three. It was the best thing for us all. He got his social needs met 3 mornings a week, I got a little alone time, we were both healthier together after that.
I have not feared other people's influence. We are secure in our beliefs and have faith in our kids to do the right thing. If you give your kids a good home life, model good behavior and are secure in your beliefs, you really have little to worry about.
Remember that the preschool ages are a natural time for kids to test boundaries. Even kids with no interaction with peers can start exhibiting unsavory behaviors because they are simply at that age. I've often been surprised at how a parent would complain that their child became a hitter in preschool when I knew first hand that the child was the ONLY hitter at preschool and certainly something they brought into the class (I used to teach preschool.) It's much easier to be a perfect child when you pretty much get your own way at home (get to eat what you like, don't have to share your toys, parents will typically play whatever you want to play, ect. )
All that said, if you are that frightened, perhaps it's not a good time to send him.