“Gathering Up the Courage to Homeschool”
by Homeschool.com’s Rebecca Kochenderfer

Are you scared to death to start homeschooling your children? For many first-time homeschoolers and even future homeschoolers, the idea of being responsible for teaching and everything else is intimidating. With some reassurance, we hope to alleviate these nagging fears!

When Your Loved Ones Don’t Support Your Decision

Homeschooling can be a lonely road to travel – especially if you don’t have a support system in place or when your support system isn’t supportive. In other words, when well-meaning friends and family members who don’t understand homeschooling speak ill of it, you can start to doubt yourself.

The fact is, people seem to fear that which they do not understand. Homeschooling is, to many of your friends and family members, a totally foreign concept. They’re used to schools because that’s how they were educated and everyone else around them seems to be content following in that pattern by sending their children to school. Not you, though! You, the lone wolf, are doing something unique and very different, and this scares them.

First, understand that they do mean well. They don’t mean to upset you or make you question yourself and your abilities. In fact, it’s usually just the opposite; they love your children so much and are just concerned. Second, you must realize that people naturally fear what they don’t understand. Since your friends and family members probably don’t know any other homeschoolers, you get to be the “guinea pig” and are on the receiving end of their uncertainty.

Helping Loved Ones Understand

As far as we can tell, the only thing that will really help your loved ones understand your decision is TIME. Slowly, day by day, month by month, and year by year, time will pass. As it does, your loved ones will notice something about your children. Given time, they are bound to notice something is different. . Your children may not seem to be as wild as the other children they know. Your children may also enjoy each other’s company, unlike most other school-aged children they know. While these are certainly positive things, family members and friends will only notice them with the passage of time.

When you take the road less traveled, it can make you feel isolated from others. Knowing that, in the end, your friends and loved ones will undoubtedly praise you is encouraging. Homeschooling is a courageous (and selfless) act, andt with time and experience, others are sure to the proof in your children!

Homeschooling during the summer months may feel like bucking against the tide, but you’re not alone. The key is to find a groove that works for your family structure. Hopefully, these tips will help you make a smoother transition.

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