Whether it’s a spouse, friend, or family member, not everyone will support your desire to homeschool your children. It will be easier to respond to these hesitations after some preparation. Here are a few things to do when someone you know doesn’t support homeschooling.
Have an Answer Prepared
Sometimes critics will leave you alone after a simple reply. Have something prepared that explains kindly but firmly why you’ve made this decision. You could say, “We’ve thought about this for a long time. After doing research and talking with other homeschool parents, we’ve determined this is best for our child.” Be clear that the decision is in everyone’s best interest and that you are confident it’s the right thing to do.
Set Firm Boundaries
If someone won’t leave you alone about your decision to homeschool, you’ll need to set boundaries for your own well-being. You get to make the decisions for your child. Make it clear that this is not open for discussion anymore and that you don’t find it productive to argue about. This can be a difficult conversation to have, but it’s best for everyone involved.
Responding to someone who doesn’t support your decision to homeschool is much easier when you don’t feel alone. Find a support system of other parents who have made the same decision. Ask them if you can reference them in a conversation. When your critic brings up their doubts, you can say your friend has been homeschooling their children for years and loves it.
Acknowledge Common Fears
Instead of dismissing all the doubts someone brings you, acknowledge the points they keep bringing up. You can say, “I worried about that too. But then I did my research and found out…” You’ll legitimize their concerns and show them you still feel confident in your decision.
Keep Your Kids at the Front
Homeschooling is about creating the best experience for your child. If you feel comfortable bringing them into the conversation, don’t be afraid to mention them. You can say, “I understand your concerns, but [our child] has had a wonderful experience so far. We’ve talked about it and made this decision together.” This will further legitimize your decision making.
HomeschoolFacts.com has a complete list of support groups to help support you in your homeschooling endeavors and connect with homeschoolers near you. You can search the list of support groups here: https://www.homeschoolfacts.com/homeschool-support-groups.html