View Full Version : Weekly Poll: How supportive is your spouse/partner of your decision to homeschool?

03-31-2010, 09:21 PM
So I was talking this week with a lady who is new to homeschooling this year, and is already planning on putting her son and daughter back in public school next year because her husband is so unsupportive of the whole homeschooling idea. He comes from a country where it is supposedly illegal to homeschool, and the concept of home education is truly foreign to him. So it got me curious about others out there...just how much support (if any) do you receive from your significant other?

03-31-2010, 09:45 PM
I voted for "wasn't sure at first," because that describes our situation exactly. I've talked about homeschooling from the very start, but Russ wanted to see how Zack would do in school. It's taken three years for him to come around but he's very enthusiastic about it now, especially since he's realized just how much time is wasted in an average school day and how the focus is on athletics rather than academics. He's been working extra hours so I won't have to worry about trying to hold down a job while I homeschool and he's arranged for weekends away for me after we start homeschooling so I'll have some "me" time to recoup and recharge. I couldn't ask for anyone more supportive, even if it did take him a while.

03-31-2010, 10:32 PM
I voted for "wasn't sure at first," because that describes our situation exactly. I've talked about homeschooling from the very start, but Russ wanted to see how Zack would do in school. It's taken three years for him to come around but he's very enthusiastic about it now, especially since he's realized just how much time is wasted in an average school day and how the focus is on athletics rather than academics. He's been working extra hours so I won't have to worry about trying to hold down a job while I homeschool and he's arranged for weekends away for me after we start homeschooling so I'll have some "me" time to recoup and recharge. I couldn't ask for anyone more supportive, even if it did take him a while.

Cool Ginny, your hubby sounds like a real keeper. He's arranging weekends away for you?! What a pearl!!! I replied that we are completely on board. Greg is my biggest supporter, he absolutely wanted me to homeschool Noah. He is supportive in the way that he doesn't get involved much and lets me do what I want, which I love. But he does ask Noah what's he done every evening and quizzes him on his multiplication facts. He tries to do more "athletic" things with him like taking him to play racquetball or basketball or to a fishing clinic. I guess he wants father/son bonding time, especially since he's gone 10 hours each day. He is also great in the way that he rarely makes comments about the house looking like crap when I don't clean. He just grabs a broom or the vacuum cleaner and does it himself. If only he would scrub the shower once in a while too... and scheduled little outings for me, lol...

04-01-2010, 12:12 AM
I went with completely on board too - Dh has always been 110% supportive of the idea of homeschooling. When we first started kicking it around he shared his opinion but ultimately left it up to me since I was the one who would actually be doing the day-to-day work.

Like Ginny's dh, mine works long hours to make sure that I'm able to work as little as possible to be home and he has no problem with the fact that our house is overrun with women every Friday night for scrapbooking night (otherwise known as Decompression Night) in the schoolroom. Actually, I think he enjoys those nights because there is always yummy snacks everyone brings to share.

Like Nathalie's dh, mine is also right in there asking follow up questions and wanting to hear all about our day's adventures. It always amazes me to hear what has stuck in Matt's noggin from the day's work. Sometimes it is a lot more than I ever could have hoped for and sometimes it is far less than expected but it is always interesting!

So to make a long post, short (Too Late!) - DITTO!

04-01-2010, 01:43 AM
This was a mutual decision, no question about it. We both have different reasons for homeschooling, and I started thinking about it, researching and planning it before our son was born (heck, before I was pregnant with him!). We are definitely a fortunate family. :) It sounds like many of you have great spouses too!

04-01-2010, 03:37 AM
I'll be honest - neither of us was totally on board in the beginning! I just knew I couldn't deal with another ps situation like the one that we had just left, and we couldn't afford private school, so that left homeschooling. Did I mention that we knew NO homeschoolers?? All we'd heard were stories about jumper-wearing moms who sat their 15 kids around the kitchen table to do history lessons from the Bible. :)

Originally we were going to try things at the new school until Christmas break, and pull him out then if things weren't working. I just couldn't go through with enrolling him, though. I have to give dh tons of credit for never second guessing the decision, and being supportive of my need for alone time every week (I love my Saturday mornings). And our families have both been supportive since the start (at least to our faces - LOL).

04-01-2010, 07:25 AM
My husband was so-so! I made the mistake of NOT planning for ANYTHING, and took my kids out of their new school on base here, the DAY our household goods arrived from the US! I didn't have a thing ready to go-no curriculum-NOTHING!!! Not one of my best ideas!

At any rate, I plan on homeschooling at least 2 of my 4 boys in the fall. My husband is VERY reluctant now, though it has nothing to do with 'homeschooling' per se. Because of our extremely wet and long winter last year, and ubeknowst to me at the time that I started going through some MAJOR hormonal changes, I put my kids back in school! I thought I was losing it, and unfortunately, started taking it out on the kids-not a nice thing to do. My husband thinks that it might not be a good idea to go through it all again, but now that I know what the problem was-things are much better.

Sorry for TMI! :-)

04-01-2010, 09:43 AM
Jamisina, you're not alone! This winter has been tough on us too and we're in Florida. It's been longer and colder (and last week wetter) than any winter in recent memory and I'm so glad when we get sunny days (it's a whole 10 degrees colder than it should be this time of year, not that I complain because I like temps in the 70s and low 80s much better than the 90s and up).

I go through one week a month when suddenly I lose all patience with Noah and sometimes it's not pretty. But what I end up doing is just letting him be more independent during that week and he actually works better when I'm not looking over his shoulder constantly, so it ends up being a welcome break for the both of us, lol. Next year I plan on trying to let him do even more independent work (it sounds almost like an oxymoron, "planning to unplan", lol) but Greg is skeptical of that approach... which is why I'm grateful that he doesn't stick his nose into what we do in how we do it too much because it leaves me a great deal of freedom. I'm the one wanting to share my thoughts with him so he feels involved, otherwise he wouldn't really know what we're doing. Maybe your husband would feel better about it if you shared your plans for next year with him, including how you plan on dealing with the Winter Blues. Believe me, it happens in all families and it happens in p.s. schools too.

04-01-2010, 09:15 PM
My husband was totally opposed to home schooling for a long time. I stayed home when our baby was first born, and often talked of wanting to home school my other son, becuase he was bright but troubled. But i went back to work for a while. I got to the point where I really hated my job, and my husband said it was ok with him if I stayed home until our youngest was in kindergarten (which would be a year and 3 months) - and he told me the only reason he offered was that my son was in a better place at school and i wasnt talking about home schooling him any more.

HOwever, my teen daughter started having real trouble in high school, and he ok'd me taking her out to finish up at community college. We ended up working with the school district, but she couldnt drive yet, so I had to stay home and drive her to three different schools. That year, my son was having such a rough time in middle school that I had to come pick him up at least once a week, and he started getting detentions and suspensions. Meanwhile, our little one was waking up every morning, even saturday, crying that he didnt want to go back to school.

finally, my husband said he would not veto me if I decided to home school. however, he was sure i would fail, probably because i would have a nervous breakdown.

My first day, he called me (we usualy ony email) to check on me. He constantly tells me not to worry so much about the curriculum, and to take a day off when we need it. 3 months in to it, he said it was clearly an improvement for my son.

He still gets nervous if i talk about home schooling long-term, but I think he'll continue to support me in home schooling as long as I think its the best choice for us. Not that supporting means doing any more chores than he did before or anything like that!

04-01-2010, 09:50 PM
Cara, it sounds to me that despite a gruff approach, your husband's heart is in the right place. I think all you can do to assuage his apprehension is to continue what you've been doing and share with him your successes and your research. Men, a lot of times, get nervous about the money aspect. Do you handle the family's finances? Maybe if you showed him how you plan on streamlining expenses, it might put him more at ease? When I got laid off and wanted to stay home, I planned my budget 2 years out on Excel and was able to prove to my husband that yes, we WOULD be able to make it on 1 income. Not only that, but we were able to pay off our debts too (it did help that he got a better paying job shortly after though!). Ever since my husband has realized that his quality of life is better because I'm home and I can take care of a lot of things that we both had to try and split among the 2 of us in the past, and he sees how well Noah is doing in his studies, he hasn't made a peep about me needing to go back to work. And I'm not even a good housekeeper.

04-01-2010, 10:36 PM
I didn't take the poll because I don't know how things are going to go.

I am glad it was posted to get some insight into how your spouses reacted to homeschooling.

04-02-2010, 12:11 AM
Well, truthfully we dont exactly budget. Both of us have always just been able to live within our means without budgeting. However, back when we were having marital problems (i skipped that part, it was in between being home w the baby and coming back home from work), I did a few months of showing him what we were actually spending, and the vast majority of it was set costs - bills and such. We also have massive food allergies, so we have ended up having to buy all organic specailty foods. The good news is, there's no eating out. I guess thats good. Honestly, one of my biggest laughs this week was when he turned to me and said, it sucks to be us. We are in this together, but nothing is easy. My oldest daughter is in crazy crisis, the middle one is bouncing off the walls in preparation for his b-day, hubby is so stressed he's ready to quit his job without a new one lined up, the youngest still ends up in our bed every night, and the cats also wake us at least once a night, and the house is always a mess . . . . but still, he knows i'm working hard and pushing myself to do the best for everyone, and never satisfied myself. He seems to see the benefits. In response to something stupid my mom said the other day (I think asking if we could just spend our savings to put my daughter through college), he and I agreed that my income was supposed to be home improvements and retirement funds and his was supposed to be basic survival. Well, we have basic survival. and a home equity line. But this seems like the least horrible path available to us atm :(

04-02-2010, 12:21 AM
I answered "wasn't sure at first," but that really only applies to homeschooling through elementary school. My husband though originally partly against it, is now very supportive of my homescholing for several years. He was originally against it because of the socialization thing, and also because he wants his children's childhood to be similar to his, which I just can't understand (especially considering all the terrible stories I've heard about his childhood. God, I hope he never comes to this message board.). Anyway, I would like to homeschool through high school if my children want that and if it's what's best for them, but my husband does not like the idea of them homeschooling for that long. I'm fairly certain he's only opposed to it because he wants them to have the same kind of social life and crazy experiences we had as teenagers. I have to admit, I have my worries about that too, but that's another post.

04-03-2010, 11:21 AM
Luckily, I have a relationship wth the hubby that entails mutual decisions in all aspects. Thus, the decision to pull our kids out of elementary school after 2nd and 1st grades, respectively, was agreed upon by both. While he many not always agree with specific things that may happen while we are homeschooling, he is still very supportive of the venture.

That being said, the bulk of the "work" of homeschooling falls on me: planning, driving around, planning for co-ops, etc. But I view that as my "job," just as he has HIS job. And....I LOVE what I do!

04-03-2010, 10:48 PM
My wife is supportive in that she agrees that home schooling is the best option for our son right now, and is accepting that our daughter wants to be home educated next year. She is less supportive when it comes to looking over curricula and materials and helping to either plan or actually participate in the actual teaching (though she does help with studying for tests in the evenings when I am at work). I have no real complaints, though her input would be helpful (since she works in the public school system).

04-05-2010, 04:42 PM
I started talking about homeschooling when Ethan was around 2 years old. In that time Craig, my husband, has gone from adamantly against it to sort of against it but has agreed to a test run for kindergarten next year. I still have my fingers crossed that he will come around and we will be able to continue on for at least the elementary years.

04-14-2010, 10:45 PM
Thought maybe this belonged here . . . I had an awful day today . . . as in, announced to dh that I'm not going to speak to my sister or my mom again for a while. He was rather pleased with that, considering what's been going on . . . but soon after I told him all about it, he suggested "Its ok to take the rest of the week off of school if you need to." I'm always so touched when he says things like that . . . i think of him as generally not very supportive and a bit of a stickler for details, so that just kinda suprises me. in a good way.

04-15-2010, 12:25 AM
i think of him as generally not very supportive and a bit of a stickler for details, so that just kinda suprises me. in a good way. Good for you! And kudos to him to realize that you need a break. My own husband surprised me too tonight because he's not in favor of unschooling (or any variation thereof) but tonight I was explaining that I was going to let Noah plan his day for a couple of weeks and then see about Noah planning his WEEK and do more "self-directed" work and he replied that it sounded like a good idea! You could have knocked me over with a feather... of course it probably helped that he was playing "Lord of the Rings" online at the same time so who knows if he actually heard what I said, lol.

Enjoy the rest of your week off! And now, since I'm curious, I'm going over to your blog to see what the heck is happening with your mom and sister. I hope you're OK. Hang in there.

04-15-2010, 10:03 PM
Oh, i didnt post it there . . . if you really want to know i could message you . . . i doubt everyone wants to hear me whine about my family

04-15-2010, 11:13 PM
Cara, I don't want to pry either.. I thought you were saying that you had posted about your mom/sister drama on your blog and I think it's always interesting to hear what's going on in people's lives that might affect the way they react. I always want to whine about my family too but I wouldn't blog or post about it either because I know it'd just come back to bite me, lol. You don't need to share anything you don't want to.

04-16-2010, 06:22 PM
My husband was more enthusiastic than I was at first even though I was very interested it. I was just really nervous and scared about doing it which is why I sent her to preschool at age 3 and also another half year at age 4. He was very opposed to the preschool thing. I did it anyway. That didn't turn out so well so I should have just listened to him from the beginning!

04-17-2010, 09:02 PM
My husband was on board from the beginning but we kind of eased into it.

My son kind of flunked out of his first preschool when he was 2 1/2 (he's a quirky little fellow and they couldn't handle him). He ended up going to Early Invention at the public school for speech delays (and unspecified quirkiness). He improved very rapidly (at least his speech, he's still quirky but we love it) but they don't make an assessment on continuing the program until April/May and all the preschools in our area enroll in January/February. So, DH and I discussed it and decided that if he was not in EI again, we'd keep him home. We also ended up discussing how he'd be bored in preschool (he already knew all his letters, could count, was fascinated by letters and numbers) and he's not the type to sit quiet if he's bored. We decided that I'd try homeschooling him for preschool to see how we did - did I have the patience to work with him, could I teach hime without either of us going insane, could we keep his enthusiasm about learning, etc.

After he was declassified and "graduated" EI they recommended he not come back for kindergarten until he was 6 (he has a late summer birthday). Since he was turning 4 that Summer, we figured that gave me 2 years to try it out and see how it went. It's been less than a year and we've already decided that we will continue homeschooling at least until high school. We live in an excellent school district (one of top 5 high schools in the state) but we've decided that ds would not be best served in public elementary school - he's ahead already and in another year will be that much more, he's definitely a Visual Spatial learner (not a good fit for ps) and it seems some of his quirkiness could be due to sensory issues.

DH always felt strongly about having me home with our kids (I worked full time until my oldest was 11 and have no desire to do that again - previous marriage). He was always bored in school and considers it a total waste of time. He feels homeschooling is a much better option to best teach a child at their level and to their interests. He also sees all that ds is learning (even when I feel nothing is getting through) because ds loves to tell him about things when dh gets home from work.

Surprisingly enough to me - both my mother and MIL have been supportive. Only a couple of people (extended family members) have expressed "concern" about our decision. Probably helps that I'm provisionally certified in Elementary Education.

08-10-2010, 12:27 PM
I picked the "not sure at first option". DH is a very laid back go with the flow kind of guy (my TOTAL opposite!). But he was concerned about socialization. He had a great time in PS growing up. He was in the same small town school system with the same group of kids all 12 years. Not our life, we move a lot (for work) and only in Tennessee did we live in an area that had less then 1 million people. DS went to PS there but I pulled him out after his teacher suggested he should see a doctor because he couldn't sit still at his desk. I mean come on he was 6 years old! So now he's agreed that until Jr high / high school it would be better to HS. I have recently started putting the idea that high school at home might be even better then PS. What with duel enrollment in local Community Colleges and more free time to intern at jobs that might interest them.... I'm sure he'll come around.

08-11-2010, 10:38 AM
My husband wasn't comfortable with it at first since all he knew about homeschoolers was what he saw on tv. But he slowly came around *watching your children grow and learn first hand has that affect I think.* :-) Now when he comes home from work he always wants to know what the boys did and they sit on the couch telling him about our day. *Or showing him how cavemen hunted for animals like they did yesterday.*

08-11-2010, 06:08 PM
We talked a lot about homeschooling off and on and it was actually him that gave the final push to making the decision! I am very thankful to have a supportive husband!

08-11-2010, 07:56 PM
I put "he wasn't sure at first but has definitely come around" but that's not entirely accurate. I had been interested in homeschooling since DS was in preschool and had read a lot about it, so I was more comfortable with the idea when we finally got to our wit's ends with public school. DH initially wanted to give ps a try, but when it didn't work out he agreed that homeschooling was our best option at least in the short term. Now that we have a few months under our belts and DS is happier than ever, DH is definitely supportive of doing this for the remainder of his schooling. Even on the worst days I know I am 100% supported, that I'll never hear a complaint about a messy house or a boring dinner, and that DH will always contribute equally to DS's education (and in a different way than I am able).

08-11-2010, 10:01 PM
I put "it was totally a mutual decision" but that's not totally true. I decided I was going to homeschool any kids I had when I was 17 - a full decade before I had them and years before I met my husband. When we started talking marriage and kids, I was like, and by the way, we'll be homeschooling them. He was like... okay? I think I probably steamrolled him but he agreed from the get go. Since then we have talked about our goals and are really very in line with each other. He's completely supportive and involved and has been from day one.

08-11-2010, 10:15 PM
I picked "totally mutual decision," but I don't feel like that's completely true. What happened was that I decided the public school was out. He agreed. We both agreed that we couldn't afford private school. I reluctantly decided to read up on homeschooling, fully knowing that I would never ever homeschool (ha ha). When I "saw the light" and realized that homeschooling was perfect for us, that no matter what kind of school was near us I would sstill want to homeschool, my husband was fine with that. Of course, my husband almost always goes along with me (which may sound good, but isn't necessarily a good thing when you really want a discussion). So he's always been behind homeschooling 100% to the extent that he's always gone along with me.

However, he doesn't help with any of the planning, the curriculum choices, the instruction, etc. He just goes along with what I want. If I ask him to look at something, he will (he'll skim) but since I can tell his heart isn't in it, I don't usually bother too often. So he's supportive, but not an active participant at all. If that makes any kind of sense...

08-11-2010, 10:40 PM
My husband was definitely on-board. We had always planned on homeschooling; the only reason we didn't when our oldest started K was because a new charter school opened in town with promises of small class sizes and an accelerated program, mentoring and partnering with the local University and other big things... ultimately though, the classroom just wasn't the right place for our kids.