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LucilleBluth
03-16-2011, 11:40 AM
Hi everyone,
I'm wondering if anyone has needed to convince his/her spouse to accept the idea that homeschooling might be the best idea for their child/ren. My husband and I have toyed with the idea in the past but not really researched it heavily like I'm now doing. He grew up going to Catholic school K-12 and while he understands why our son might benefit from homeschooling, I feel like he might be harder to accept it because culturally, it's just not what he's used to. I love him dearly and he's usually open-minded about many things but am just wondering if others have gone through something like this and how you approached it. Thanks for your help.

LB

hockeymom
03-16-2011, 12:01 PM
First of all, I LOVE your name/avatar! We are huge AD fans! :)

To answer your question, I did have to convince my husband that homeschooling is a viable choice, and I still sometimes wonder if he's totally on board. I started researching homeschooling when DS was in preschool because it was clear to me that public school wasn't going to cut it for him. DH was totally reluctant so as a compromise we enrolled him in a French immersion school, figuring it would buy him a year or two before getting bored academically, but then we moved before K and we lost the opportunity of an alternative education. DH really wanted us to try the public school system so we did, but half way through grade 1 I'd had enough of its failings and we pulled our son out. IMO, it was the single best parenting decision we've made and while I think DH mostly agrees, I think our expectations might not quite align. I've recently raised the topic for discussion, but it hasn't happened yet.

I'd suggest starting a conversation with some of the research you've done up to this point. Invite him to check out inspirational websites you've found (including here!) and show him what a diverse group of people homeschoolers really are. Then perhaps talk about some of your expectations if you decide to homeschool, a potential schedule or how you envision your days would be spent, and with what sort of outcome (more flexibility? more academic? less stressful? more time for exploring rabbit trails? less peer pressure? whatever your priorities are). And of course, what his expectations would be, what sort of concerns he has, and whether a successful balance can be found.

For most of us, homeschooling isn't what we grew up with, and sometimes it does feel like taking a leap of faith. I'd argue that leaving the education in the hands of ps teachers and administration is a leap of faith also, but you might want to take a gentler approach. :)

Good luck!

Teri
03-16-2011, 12:14 PM
I have not been in that position. I was very lucky.
I have, however, been the go to person for a lot of people that I know that needed a spouse or ex-spouse convinced. We have had people come look at our homeschool space, see that our kids look "regular", read my blog (which has not been updated in a couple of months :p) and just talk to/email me to get a feel of what homeschooling is like.
If you can find someone locally that homeschools that shares your vision, that would be helpful to both of you.

MarkInMD
03-16-2011, 12:18 PM
I'll try to provide the perspective of the (maybe not resistant but possibly) skeptical parent, which I was at first. Maybe it's a guy thing.

What I would do if I were you is find out what his specific concerns are -- Does he worry that you (or he, if he's contributing) will be "good at it?" Is he concerned that there won't be enough social opportunities? Is he worried about costs? Whatever it happens to be. Then you both should do some research -- here and elsewhere online and in your community, if you can -- to address these specifics.

Personally, my main concern was the abilities of my wife and me to do it "right." As a full product of public schooling, including having two parents who were teachers, I had the school mindset of class/worksheet/test/repeat. I was worried that with homeschooling we wouldn't be able to give our kids the best grounding in what a "proper education" should be. And then after looking into things, I realized something. I don't have to be the best teacher in the world, I just have to be the best teacher for my kids. I have to take a hard look at how they learn, what they're interested in, and teach them in those ways, as long as I'm meeting whatever requirements my state has set up (which in MD, isn't much -- yours may be different). The more I liberated myself from the idea that our homeschool had to be more like "school" school, the easier it became to accept the possibility.

Are we perfect? Heck, no! But the knowledge I've gained from this experience into my son's behavior, learning styles, and interests is so valuable that I won't stress about being perfect. You know your child(ren) better than anyone ever will, and you can use that knowledge to their advantage.

Some folks -- and I think men in particular -- just need more time and evidence to come around to a way of thinking that they might want to embrace but have reservations about. So have some frank conversations if you haven't already, and then look into these things, preferably together. It's possible to bring a spouse around. I'm living proof!

farrarwilliams
03-16-2011, 12:23 PM
I was about to say pretty much what Teri said. I was also very lucky that dh was totally on board with homeschooling (though the fact that I announced it to him way before we had kids probably helped) but in the families I know where the spouses were/are a little iffy, it seems to have helped to have them connect with other homeschoolers in our little community - to do stuff with our group and just see that we're all normal people, who socialize and the kids like each other, etc. Of course, that sort of comes after the initial hurdle, but I think it has calmed some hesitant spouses I know of.

Are your kids really young still? We were part of a great preschool homeschool group that had field trips and a weekly playgroup. Preschool for some families seems to be a "trying it out" time (though I'm not convinced that's the best test for later, but whatever...) and that gave some families I know a chance to be part of a group of homeschoolers and yet not feel committed to sticking with it forever.

I also love your avatar ;)

Aandwsmom
03-16-2011, 12:25 PM
Yep! Hubby was TOTALLY against it. I wanted to start our kids from Kindy as homeschoolers and he was of the mindset of the religious, kids never socialized, all wearing homemade clothes, homeschool zombies that movies of the 70's portrayed, etc. No way, no how were his kids being homeschooled.
Well, FF to Oldest son entering middle school... I had my concerns. 5 weeks later we were pulling him and homeschooling him for at least the rest of 6th grade to get him caught up.
Well, a few weeks into homeschooling.... Hubby was converted! He will tell anyone who will listen that it was the best choice we could have made, that he wishes he had listened to me earlier, etc. The changes in my sons after switching to homeschooling was enough to convince him that this was a good choice.

dbmamaz
03-16-2011, 12:33 PM
Both my first and second husbands were totally opposed to homeschool AND private school. they both grew up poor (I did not) and had the 'public school was good enough for me' thing. My current husband was so opposed, that he actually admitted he suggested I could take a year off (the year before Raven started K) to spend the time at home w Raven - only becuase Orion was in a decent program and I'd stopped talking about wanting to home school him.

However, that year I spent at home, my duaghter started taking most of her classes at community college and independent study at a different high school, and my husband (and mom) were able to see how much better she did getting out of regular school. Plus, that year Orion was having such a bad year that I was having to go pick him up at least 2 times each week, plus getting at least 1-2 other hysterical, crying calls from him when I DIDNT pick him, and also Raven was waking up every morning in our bed (he doenst go to sleep there . . . sigh) and CRYING that he didnt want to go back to kindergarten. KINDERGARTEN?!

So dh said he wouldnt veto me if I decided to home school, but made me promise I would follow the public school curriculum in case I failed partway through and had to put the kids back in to school. However, within 4 months of us starting, he was confident it was working. We discussed Orion's high school plans (in VA, its almost impossible to come in to high school part way through), and dh was ok w me committing to keep him home the whole time. However, while I"m hoping Raven will go back to school for high school, dh is hoping for middle school. We both really miss my income.

Teri
03-16-2011, 12:38 PM
Preschool for some families seems to be a "trying it out" time (though I'm not convinced that's the best test for later, but whatever...)




I absolutely agree with this. When Joseph was 3 or 4, he did not want to take ANY instruction from me at all. He didn't want to show what he knew, he didn't want to cooperate with anything that I did. LOL If we had to make our decision when he was 3, we would have thrown in the towel before we ever started. He is a completely different animal at almost 11.

LucilleBluth
03-16-2011, 01:19 PM
Thank you all so much for your informative and quick responses!

Mark - we are in MD too so I'd love to talk with you about specific requirements in our state. In fact, I posted something to that effect on the MD forum earlier today.

Farrar - the son I'm thinking about homeschooling is currently in fourth grade - he's had a taste of private Friends school and liked it but it was just too expensive to continue after three years and now two years of public school which have been a disappointment to all of us.

All of your ideas are great and I will use them if I need to. Who knows - maybe he won't even need convincing! Thanks again.

PS: Glad to know there are other AD fans here - but how could there not be in this awesome group!?

Dutchbabiesx2
03-16-2011, 01:51 PM
My husband was pretty against it, he is from Europe that that is not an option there.
We spent 2 years fighting over decent treatment in public school. There was a day in Kindy that I nearly grabbed our older son to take him out and never return, but I think that would have been a tough week at home between hubby and I. We tried another school and within a few weeks I actually had to pull him due to a mental health break down (at 7 years old) due to accusations of something he did, which he did not.
My husband was away on business and I had just the older one home and we spent a lot of time just together and working on some school work, I had to prove to him it was doable, to hubby and myself.
Within a few weeks I got more angry about how he had been treated at school and wanted to pull my other child (who was doing fine, not awesome, but fine). My husband was totally against it, he thought it was just me letting my emotions get in the way of clear decision making.
well I then crossed the line and told hubby if he wanted our younger son to go to school he would need to get his arse up and take him and pick him up every day, I was not going to. You'd think that would be a huge marriage breaker, but after a few cross words, he saw that I felt deep in my soul that PS was not what our children needed.
We gave our younger one the choice. He stayed home a few days and decided home is better. We discovered his love for numbers, all things math and electronics, we might have missed this leaving him in PS. Hubby being an Engineer loves to see him flourish with numbers and circuits. Our other son is also flourishing and it is great to see his mind work with little constraints.

I had to pick out the curriculum, show hubby that we can do a schedule and now what tells him this is the better choice- no tired cranky kids, no fighting over bed time, or getting kids up in the morning, no school commitments or stupid comments from teachers who think they can do better. A wife who is happier to see her kids allllll day long (and he travels so coming home to a happy house is priceless to him).

Sometimes the proof is in the pudding. If you feel it in your gut, I hope you can show him that it is a good option.

We also befriended our local secular HS group (they are great!) and invited over another like minded family for dinner, met the kids, bounced off questions . . . .He also felt better about it after meeting 'normal' people.

Laina
03-17-2011, 10:10 PM
Hey,

I love AD too! We've seen them all, but sometimes we go to hulu and just pick an episode randomly for a laugh.

I think you have to work with who your dh is. Homeschooling would never have crossed dh's mind, and when I really started considering it, I'd mention it here and there and he didn't have much of a response. The thing is, he buys every left-leaning conspiracy theory and corporate/government plot out there, so all I had to do was read him a couple of lines about the government and corporations designing public education to eliminate independent thinking in order to promote mindless consumerism, or something like that, and he was sold on homeschooling :) Plus I told him maybe when the kids are middle school age we can travel doing "world school," and since I can work remotely, he can teach the kids "Howl" for English and "People's History of the United States" for History and go surfing for gym. He's sold.

kewb22
03-18-2011, 08:51 AM
It took me 2 years to convince my husband that this was the route to take. I found out what all his concerns were. I researched and researched and researched. Books, the interent, local groups. I would read him interesting paragraphs from the books and articles I was reading. I left reading material in the bathroom (this was the place he was most likely to pick something up and read) and I left it all over the house. After awhile he started coming around and realized that I was truly serious and giving this the thought and planning it needed and he was willing to try it for a year. 3 years later and we are all still loving it.

BrendaE
03-18-2011, 09:28 AM
Hey,

I love AD too! We've seen them all, but sometimes we go to hulu and just pick an episode randomly for a laugh.

I think you have to work with who your dh is. Homeschooling would never have crossed dh's mind, and when I really started considering it, I'd mention it here and there and he didn't have much of a response. The thing is, he buys every left-leaning conspiracy theory and corporate/government plot out there, so all I had to do was read him a couple of lines about the government and corporations designing public education to eliminate independent thinking in order to promote mindless consumerism, or something like that, and he was sold on homeschooling :) Plus I told him maybe when the kids are middle school age we can travel doing "world school," and since I can work remotely, he can teach the kids "Howl" for English and "People's History of the United States" for History and go surfing for gym. He's sold.


Hahahah Thats SO awesome. Especially that last sentence! I never had to convince anyone but I enjoy reading this thread. hehehe

MarkInMD
03-18-2011, 09:32 AM
Yes, we all have the power to choose how our children will be corrupted. :)

AddlepatedMonkeyMama
03-18-2011, 05:15 PM
I took Laina's approach. My husband thought homeschooling was weird, but I knew that the idea of a classical or otherwise rigorous curriculum would interest him. He (in his typical fashion) immersed himself in researching different curricula and started getting excited about the idea.

MarkInMD
03-18-2011, 05:21 PM
I took Laina's approach. My husband thought homeschooling was weird, but I knew that the idea of a classical or otherwise rigorous curriculum would interest him. He (in his typical fashion) immersed himself in researching different curricula and started getting excited about the idea.

This is a great idea, in fact. Men do tend to want to feel like decisive human beings, so if you can enlist his help in any way by asking him to be part of the curriculum-finding process, I think that would get most men's brains engaged. It would work with me, for sure.

rumbledolly
03-18-2011, 05:36 PM
My husband was all for homeschooling a few months ago. It's not as 'for' it now based on the financial hit we've taken and he thinks my DD is taking advantage of the situation. Though on the other hand he's very happy about the lack of tears on a daily basis and our house is much calmer! I found he does get excited about things like I do and he'll search the web far and wide for more information about a subject we're trying to teach. I let him believe we use ALL his suggestion...hehehe.

Pilgrim
03-18-2011, 07:00 PM
I knew that the idea of a classical or otherwise rigorous curriculum would interest him. He (in his typical fashion) immersed himself in researching different curricula and started getting excited about the idea.

Hey, that's what my wife did. Hmmm.... She played me. ;)

It was her idea to really go forward with HS (we'd tossed it around in jest when DD would have trouble in school, which was often). And I, being the research geek, dove right into it.

I am now convinced. See how she did that?

BrendaE
03-18-2011, 07:12 PM
Its that line from Big Fat Greek Wedding I believe...

The man thinks he is the head of the home, but the woman is the neck and she turns the head where she wants it. mouhahaha

(though I much prefer being single actually... but hey.. if ya have to be married mouhahahha)

wife&mommy
03-19-2011, 10:09 PM
My husband was not a fan but I knew we would homeschool even when I was pregnant with my first child. I think just in the five years I had been talking about it just like that was the way it was going to be, he came around. We can't afford private school and he isn't a fan of the public schooling in our area so he kind of just accepted it and now after less than a year of actually doing it, he LOVES it.

SueEllen Grieves-Curl
03-19-2011, 11:40 PM
I wish that I could help you here. But I can not say that I have had to go through this. My husband only wants to know what our girls do and that they are learning. So we plaster one of our walls with all of their work. It is cleared off on Saturday and starts to fill back up on Monday. This is how he also knows that we are on a break as the wall will stay bare. we talked about schooling from the day they were born. So the option was always there. I did however agree to let my oldest go to public school and for her to decide what she wanted to do. So she went to PS for 2 weeks in kindergarten. One week in one school and than again later on that year in a different school. And both times she did not want to go back. All my husband is worried about is the results from the girls. If they are learning than he has no issues with it. We have had this discussion a few times and each time I tell him to sit down with the girls and ask them what they have learned since the last time he asked them.

Look I am all for HS but I do feel the need to tell you that this really must be a family decision and each family is different. Some kids do great in PS and others not so much and those kids do even better in HS than they ever would in PS.
There are other things to consider as well.

Mostly the money. HS young children means that chances are you will have to live on one income for at least until they are teenagers (and maybe longer even). Than you have to consider the cost of HS. This can range you from as little as $100 a year to a few thousand a year, depending on the options you take.

One of the most important things is your state laws. You need to know what they are so you follow them. every state is different so be sure to check.

Some of the better reasons are that unless your state says what you have to teach your child, you are in complete control (for a while that is) of what your child is taught. Also you are the one there to help and guide not some stranger. So you get to see them when they finally get it and understand that thing you have worked so hard on for the last month. Also you can go at your child's pace. Your child is not forced to sit and wait while the rest of the class catches up or forced to skip over because they need more time. Also you get more time with your child. This is the biggest reason for us anyways.

Whatever you decide just know that this decision will impact all of your family not just your child, or you. So I say just sit down with him and explain to him that you want to HS and what the reason are. Than listen to what he says. Be prepared when you sit down for anything that he can come back with and if he says something that you have not researched just tell him you do not know and you will find out and get back to him. Most of all be honest and stay calm. We are here to answer any question that you or he may have. And also know that HS is becoming more and more normal than before.

Sam
03-22-2011, 12:16 PM
My husband falls into the "indifferent" header. The kids school has always been up to me, whether they were HSed or in PS. I know he does feel that HSing is just "one of my projects" and that it won't last and I'll have DD1 back in PS when I get bored. He doesn't seem to believe that we're in it for the long haul. Oh well, we'll just keep showing him how much DD1's learning and how much DD2 will learn.