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<p>I don't know what I'm looking for by posting this.  Just support or commiseration, I suppose. </p>
<p> </p>
<p>I just started homeschooling my ds in the beginning of January.  I'd been researching it for a year, and told my folks about it in November.  Both my parents are retired school teachers, and I think that my dad has become particularly rigid in this thinking as he approaches 80 years old.  I think that they were excellent school teachers, very dedicated to their students.  And, I think that there are still some dedicated and excellent school teachers teaching today.  My unhappiness with school resides in the system itself, and not the individuals trying to do their best with limited resources and way too much emphasis testing, with the concomitant teaching to the test.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>I feel that in my education, I learned what it took to get an A, and that's what I did.  I do not think that I learned to think deeply, or love learning, in my education.  I did well on tests, and that was enough.  In the years since I graduated, I have either discovered or rediscovered the joy of learning, and feel that I am excellent at researching any topic that interests me, and read a great deal on a wide range of topics.  I would like my children to love learning and enjoy, equally, the process and the outcome.  Additionally, I would like my family to spend more time together than is possible with a public school schedule.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>So, my father is basically so upset with my homeschooling my child, that he cannot talk to me.  When I told him about the possibility in November, he was very angry, but his words were to the effect of:  It's your child and your decision...but that's crazy and I can't talk with you about this... but what about socialization?  So, I replied that my son would be taking a number of classes with other children and other teachers.  But that's about as far as I got, before he got too upset and left.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>I know that if I try to talk with him, he will not listen and we will both end up yelling at each other, probably with me in tears. </p>
<p>So, I just don't know what to do.  Let it lay, or force the issue.  Oh, and my parents will be moving 4 hours away, to a retirement community by my sister, when their house sells, probably in the summer.  These plans have been in the works for a while, and have nothing to do with this issue.  Also, they still see my kids regularly- Mom takes them for sleepovers once a week or so. </p>
<p> </p>
<p>Any opinions?</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Thanks</p>
 

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<p>Just don't bring the topic up with them.  You don't need to discuss your kids education with them at all.  If they bring it up just tell them that "we're giving this a try, end of story" and change the subject.  You don't need their approval!</p>
 

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<p>Personally, I would let it lay for a bit.  Give your dad some time to process.  Some people just need more time to think things through.  Let him see how well your DS is doing, see how he still has a social life while also learning more and better.  Your dad may come around.</p>
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<p>I am a former teacher, and former professor of education who used to teach my students to become teachers.  And I am now homeschooling my child.  If I can come around, anyone can.  Hang in there.  ;)</p>
<p> </p>
<p>But I would prepare yourself for the possibility that he may never come around.  My IL's do not approve and they never will, regardless of the fact that our DD is happier, learning more, still plenty social, and she has an immune disorder that makes attending school pretty sketchy for her anyway.  They are the type that just can't handle anything "different."  So DH and I have come to peace with the fact that we can agree to disagree, that as nice as it would be to have, we don't *need" their approval.  We feel confident in our decision, and know that we are best-suited to make educational choices for our children.  We are polite about it all, don't push our agenda or try to convince the ILs of anything, because its only going to strain our relationship with them.  We do our thing, and they are going to have to deal.  If they make a comment, we kind of ignore it and move on.  We can be the bigger people here without caving to them, kwim?</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Good luck!</p>
 

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<p>i'm going through something similar and it's really frustrating! in my case it's my sister, who just graduated with a teaching degree, and i can't even bring up the IDEA of wanting to homeschool dd (who is only 2) without my sister getting all pissed off and refusing to talk about it. i'm really sorry you have to go through this with your dad, because it's hard when you don't have the support or understanding of those close to you. i'm hoping that eventually my sister will relax her stance on this, and for the time being, i'm not even going to bring it up anymore. good luck, mama </p>
<p> </p>
 

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<p><br>
 </p>
<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>missreeka</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1292194/family-disapproves-of-homeschooling#post_16194443"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>i'm going through something similar and it's really frustrating! in my case it's my sister, who just graduated with a teaching degree, and i can't even bring up the IDEA of wanting to homeschool dd (who is only 2) without my sister getting all pissed off and refusing to talk about it. i'm really sorry you have to go through this with your dad, because it's hard when you don't have the support or understanding of those close to you. i'm hoping that eventually my sister will relax her stance on this, and for the time being, i'm not even going to bring it up anymore. good luck, mama </p>
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<p>I've gotta say, my SIL took it as a deep personal insult that we homeschooled.  There is a large age gap so my brother and I were still school aged when the 3 older kids were adults.  The oldest brother's wife became a teacher AFTER we had already been homeschooling for years, I actually HELPED her get her degree by being her Guinea pig...but she still took it as an insult.  Years later...she is homeschooling her own sons!  Funny how things change!  So you never know who will come around...even those you would least expect.<br>
 </p>
 

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<p> My MIL and two of his aunts are teachers, even though MIL retired she still volunteers at the local school three days a week.   She sees teaching as an enormous part of her identity.  She raised my oldest son (stepson) for part of his babyhood while DH was stationed overseas.  She wasn't at all supportive of our choice to home school, originally we unschooled.  She started harping on the importance of early education and being prepared for school when the older kids were only two and three.  When we were stationed overseas, she'd send us packages of work books and paper because those aren't readily available on US military bases.<img alt="eyesroll.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/eyesroll.gif"></p>
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<p>Every email, phone call and conversation were about sending the kids to school until DH put his foot down.  He told her in no uncertain terms that while we appreciated her concerns and point of view, they were our children.  During visits, she'd still try to subtly (she thought) quiz them about their ABCs and if they could read etc.  We put a stop to that because my oldest daughter was reading at four, but my oldest son wasn't even though he's a year older and it hurt his self esteem.</p>
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<p>However, when my oldest son wasn't reading at 8 years old and couldn't count past 20, MIL was the person I called.  She's the one who gently suggested unschooling wasn't working for him, though it worked beautifully for my oldest daughter.  She's the one who suggested short multiple daily lessons, trying different curriculums, and different approaches.  She helped me work with him during vacations and visits.  She has been an invalauble resource for him and my third son.  </p>
<p> </p>
<p>MIL noticed from the time my now seven year old was a toddler that he had difficulties in certain areas.  She's the one who suggested early intervention, despite my initial concerns and tendency to believe he'd out grow his challenges.  She helped us find an evaluator who would support our beliefs and desire to home school.  She was right, DS 7 has ADHD, central auditory processing disorder, and SPD.  Early intervention helped him make important initial gains.    </p>
 
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<p>I don't get why teacher grandparents get bent out of shape when it turns out their own child has a penchant for teaching. Are they really that enamored of the classroom management aspect of education?</p>
<p> </p>
<p>My friend's MIL was a teacher and her response to homeschooling was to share the myriad resources she'd gained in her time in education.</p>
 

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<p>If it were me I would probably let it go. Just agree to disagree. My ILS were adamently against homeschooling. They are now some of our biggest supporters. We didn't talk about it - we just let them see what homeschooling would mean for their grandkids - and the fact that it meant more time with my ILS didn't hurt.</p>
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<p>If you feel you need to talk to your Dad about it, it might help both you and him to read Family Matters by David Gutterson.  I'm not sure if you are familiar with the book but it is written when Gutterson was a high school English teacher and he and his wife were homeschooling their children. His father adamently disagreed with the idea and much of the book centers around Gutterson's responses as an educator and a parent to those who challenged his reasons for homeschooling.   I found it quite respectful of both points of view.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Good luck - family strife is never easy and it's worse I think when it comes as a result of something we believe deeply in.</p>
 

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<p>My ILs were high school teachers, with FIL later going on to becoming a vice principle, and fortunately for us they are absolutely over the moon over us HS-ing as they can see that its in our Dds' best interests.  At first though they were very apprehensive about school records and report cards though and how the kids would eventually get into post secondary education (if they wanted to go). </p>
<p> </p>
<p>We said that we were considering all our options and would go with one that would suit all our needs.  As it turns out Distributed Learning was our path.  The ILs were happy that our Dds would be able to merge into conventional school if for whatever reason HS-ing didn't work out and that they were still under the supervision of an "official" teacher and would get regular report cards.</p>
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<p>Dh and I were happy that we would be able to control *how* our Dds learned and in what environments, which were our main concerns.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Would some kind of compromise like that work with your ILs, OP?</p>
 

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<p>At your dad's age, he is not going to get it. School was so much different when he was growing up, and even when he was teaching. I think I would do all I can to avoid any conversation of it. With my own parents, I often sent them articles and such about the benefits of home schooling and the large number of home schoolers. I am in Texas and this past year, it came out that Texas has a 7% home school rate. 7% of the people have not turned to home schooling because the schools are so wonderful.</p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Lakeeffectsnow</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1292194/family-disapproves-of-homeschooling#post_16194808"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border-bottom:0px solid;border-left:0px solid;border-top:0px solid;border-right:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p> My MIL and two of his aunts are teachers, even though MIL retired she still volunteers at the local school three days a week.   She sees teaching as an enormous part of her identity.  She raised my oldest son (stepson) for part of his babyhood while DH was stationed overseas.  She wasn't at all supportive of our choice to home school, originally we unschooled.  She started harping on the importance of early education and being prepared for school when the older kids were only two and three.  When we were stationed overseas, she'd send us packages of work books and paper because those aren't readily available on US military bases.<img alt="eyesroll.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/eyesroll.gif"></p>
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<p>Every email, phone call and conversation were about sending the kids to school until DH put his foot down.  He told her in no uncertain terms that while we appreciated her concerns and point of view, they were our children.  During visits, she'd still try to subtly (she thought) quiz them about their ABCs and if they could read etc.  We put a stop to that because my oldest daughter was reading at four, but my oldest son wasn't even though he's a year older and it hurt his self esteem.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>However, when my oldest son wasn't reading at 8 years old and couldn't count past 20, MIL was the person I called.  She's the one who gently suggested unschooling wasn't working for him, though it worked beautifully for my oldest daughter.  She's the one who suggested short multiple daily lessons, trying different curriculums, and different approaches.  She helped me work with him during vacations and visits.  She has been an invalauble resource for him and my third son.  </p>
<p> </p>
<p>MIL noticed from the time my now seven year old was a toddler that he had difficulties in certain areas.  She's the one who suggested early intervention, despite my initial concerns and tendency to believe he'd out grow his challenges.  She helped us find an evaluator who would support our beliefs and desire to home school.  She was right, DS 7 has ADHD, central auditory processing disorder, and SPD.  Early intervention helped him make important initial gains.    </p>
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<p><br><br>
I love this post, because it's all about compromise and forgiveness and putting aside one's pride. Inspiring!</p>
 

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<p>i would agree to disagree. it will take him some time to get used to the idea too obviously. there are plenty of other things going on in your life that i'm sure you guys could talk about! i'm lucky- even my sil who teaches middle school has not given us any negative feedback. mil did tell dh that she thought it was "weird", but whatever. they just ask dd how she's doing in school like they do the other grandkids. whew!</p>
 

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<p>The decision to homeschool is a difficult one and one that is not made lightly. I think that with time your parents will come to accept yours.</p>
<p>They might be reacting emotionally right now because they see it as a negative reflection on their lifework...which of course it is not!</p>
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<p>I think that we all try to do the best that we can with what we have at that moment in time. Many of us recognize that there is something fundamentally broken in the traditional school model, but it takes courage to step outside of the conventional and choose your own path. There will be days that you wonder if you made the best decision, but know that you would have as many difficult and challenging days if your child were in traditional school as well. Trust yourself. Your parents will come around with time and perhaps find new ways of integrating their past profession into their present relationship with your child. Remember there are many other homeschooling families out there facing similar challenges and we are here to support you!</p>
 

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<p>We've been homeschooling for over 20 years and I remember meeting with the same opposition from my parents.  The best thing you can do is slowly educated the educators.  There are studies by NHERI on the socialization and test scores of thousands of homeschool students around the country.  There are excellent books that show that homeschoolers aren't whack-jobs.  Take them to a seminar in your area.  Ease them into it.  Once they see how great your son is doing, they'll ease up, too.  Also, since they were teachers, ask for their advice with lesson planning or creative ideas.  Even though they're moving away, ask them to teach a course via the internet.  There is always the chance they may never come around...but you are making this decision for your son, no one else.  You know what's best for him.  No one else.  Hang in there!</p>
<p>We </p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>edwardsmom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1292194/family-disapproves-of-homeschooling#post_16194021"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><br><p>I know that if I try to talk with him, he will not listen and we will both end up yelling at each other, probably with me in tears. </p>
<p>So, I just don't know what to do.  Let it lay, or force the issue. </p>
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Well....what exactly *is* the issue? Are you asking for permission? A blessing? Because you don't need his permission and a blessing would be nice but you can't force one out of somebody.</p>
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<p>If he won't listen to what you have to say, let it go. Let the proof be in the pudding.</p>
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<p> </p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>2xy</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1292194/family-disapproves-of-homeschooling#post_16197330"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border-bottom:0px solid;border-left:0px solid;border-top:0px solid;border-right:0px solid;"></a><br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>edwardsmom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1292194/family-disapproves-of-homeschooling#post_16194021"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border-bottom:0px solid;border-left:0px solid;border-top:0px solid;border-right:0px solid;"></a><br><br><br><p>I know that if I try to talk with him, he will not listen and we will both end up yelling at each other, probably with me in tears. </p>
<p>So, I just don't know what to do.  Let it lay, or force the issue. </p>
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Well....what exactly *is* the issue? Are you asking for permission? A blessing? Because you don't need his permission and a blessing would be nice but you can't force one out of somebody.</p>
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<p>If he won't listen to what you have to say, let it go. Let the proof be in the pudding.</p>
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No, I'm not asking for permission or a blessing.  Just hoping to continue to have a relationship with him at some point.</p>
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<p>Thank you to everyone for your input.  It helps to have some outside perspectives and some stories of how people, especially educators, came around.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>I would love to agree to disagree, but if my father won't see me, I don't know how that works.  Perhaps, in time...</p>
 

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<p>My mother is firmly against homeschooling, to the point that she very vocally tells people that it should be illegal worldwide and that all homeschooling parents should be jailed a month for every year they've homeschooled one child.  Nice.  She was calling CPS on us last school year when she finally figured out that we were homeschooling, and got mad at me when she did figure it out because I flat out LIED and said that they were going to a private school (and it took her half the school year to figure it out).  What helped us most was keeping a blog and documenting everything that we're doing educationally with the girls.  She doesn't ask questions or make nasty hateful remarks about it any longer thankfully, and quit drilling my girls on math facts and spelling words over the phone once I told her that if she did it again she'd not be permitted to talk to them on the phone.  She's not a teacher and as far as I know there are no teachers in the family (got a great-aunt who is a retired ps bus driver though) but her only exposure to homeschooling before me teaching her only grandkids is her brother and his wife hsing my 2 cousins (and she honestly HATES this particular brother, so anything he does she automatically and instantly insists is wrong and should not be done by any normal people).</p>
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<p>So yeah, I completely get what you are feeling, although my resistance is from non-teaching family members.  What I feel helped most with getting her to at least knock off the attitude about it is giving her a link to my blog and letting her know whenever I put up a new post there that describes our current, just finished, or upcoming academics and how the kids are growing and learning.  I've also gone to her on occassion with things if I need help with something related to academics with one of my girls.  She usually has wonderful ideas to present a topic from a different angle than I've been doing it.  She also is a huge bookworm and has given me hundreds of read aloud suggestions to add to our already full reading schedule (I ask for ideas once in a while when we are running low on ideas or need a change of pace).  But other than that we don't discuss schooling at all because of our very strong and very different opinions on the matter.</p>
 

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<p>When we decided to home school our son after a less then successful year of kindergarten in a private school, both sides of our family had concerns.  My sister, an educator, did express her concerns to me.  She was afraid we hadn't thought it through.  So I laid it all on the table.  I listed  everything we had tried: holding him back a year, private school, an IEP, counseling, social skill classes, martial arts, medication for his ADHD, I volunteered in the class room three days a week, and weekly meetings with his teacher.  I listed the private  schools and public schools I had checked out, sat in the class room and observed, 10 in all.  I told her the truth we were home schooling on the advice of his pediatrician, the vice principal of his private school, his therapist, and his pre school teacher.  The only feasible way to keep him in school was to give my 7 year old son medication for anxiety.  I asked her if she had any better ideas.  She's never uttered a word of criticism.  In fact she provides me with a lot of his science curriculum.  She lives locally and often emails me information on classes he might be interested.</p>
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<p>We've been home schooling for almost two years.  He slowly emerged from his shell.  He's turning back into the kid he use to be.  He's much more out going, friendly, and down right chatty with family.  He's clearly happier, he's learning and is actively interested in learning.  He talks about what he's learned to our family.  Before he'd just say "Hi", duck his head and go play his DS.  Now, he talks about playing with friends, learning piano, snow shoeing, swimming lessons, his curling team, and of course video games.  Their concerns that he was going to be "One of those weird home schooling kids" have been abated.  He clearly has less social problems since we started home schooling.  It's not perfect and it's clear one BIL thinks we're crazy, but several relatives have made comments about how well he's doing.  </p>
<p> </p>
 

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<p>My mom makes comments here and there. She spent many years volunteering at the local elementary school and she's strongly anti-homeschool.She's kind of passive-aggressive about it though. She'll say it's my choice and I am the mom etc but then make totally out of context comments about how homeschoolers take funding from the schools and how kids need to be socialized and that she's sure we could afford preschool if we just found a good co-op. I've tried to tell her I don't want these things, that I have looked into all the options in our area etc and every doctor who has seen my son thinks he would be better off at home (he has Asperger's, Sensory Processing Disorder and is likely gifted, school would be a mess and any school-like setting he's been in has been really hard for him...) It's frustrating. I can't imagine if she wouldn't speak to me at all though. Honestly, OP I think that I would tell your father that this is not an issue that's changing and that it would be a shame to ruin your relationship and his relationship with the kids over it. Maybe you can put it in perspective to him, that no matter how important traditional education may be to him, his family should be more important. </p>
<p> </p>
<p>Good luck. </p>
 

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<p>I spread this little tidbit every chance I get....</p>
<p> </p>
<p><a href="http://www.secular-homeschooling.com/001/bitter_homeschooler.html" target="_blank">The Bitter Homeschooler's Wish List</a></p>
 
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