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    #12125 - 03/19/08 10:03 PM Re: Defensive Homeschoolers? [Re: ]
    Kriston Offline

    Registered: 09/19/07
    Posts: 6145
    Loc: Midwest
    Originally Posted By: PhysicistDave
    Is that really being condescending?

    Yes, very.

    #12129 - 03/20/08 02:24 AM Re: Defensive Homeschoolers? [Re: Kriston]


    Well… as much it seems somehow to offend you, I still give you my well wishes.

    You started this thread by specifically quoting some comments from me from another thread and offering your own take on my previous comments. In some cases you misrepresented what I had said or misrepresented my views.

    For example, I said:
    >I would rather they [my kids] be a bit blind to all of those little social cues and pressures that cause most people to fall in line with the “group,” whether what the group is doing is good or not.

    You responded:
    >But unlike Dave, I don't want my kids to be blind to social cues.

    “A bit blind” is not quite the same thing as just plain “blind.”

    And later you said of me that I
    > completely buy the whole HSing philosophy
    even though you and I both know that there is no single “Hsing philosophy” to buy into, but rather a large number of competing homeschooling philosophies (and, indeed, your and my homeschooling philosophies seem to be awfully close – I like how you are handling homeschooling, Kriston, and I think I could probably learn some things from you).

    I do not think for a minute that these misrepresentations of my views were malicious or intentional on your part: as everyone knows, this is simply what happens when intelligent people have a serious discussion. They sometimes misunderstand or misrepresent each others’ positions or views, quite unintentionally.

    But the fact that you opened this thread by commenting upon my own earlier statements from another thread, and that you did mis-state my views, did clearly give me an obligation to reply to your posts and express my actual views. And, of course, since the subject you chose for this thread was your own feelings of defensiveness about your homeschooling, that inevitably meant that I would be commenting on that issue of your defensiveness.

    And my considered opinion is that you need not feel defensive, that you seem to be doing a great job homeschooling and have nothing to feel defensive about, and that therefore you really should not worry and should be happy.

    It is very sad, and slightly bemusing, that my conclusion offends you, but you chose this topic for this thread, you directly brought me into the thread in your opening post, and I am just expressing my honest opinion on the subject you chose to discuss.

    And, Kriston, I am saying nice things about you and sincerely wishing you well.

    If you are offended by that, I do not think this is a problem I can solve.

    These exchanges between you and me have, though, brilliantly illustrated my original point.

    I initially claimed that the process of going through traditional schools tends to make people overly, and unnecessarily, sensitive to other people’s opinions and creates fear of other people's disapproving of them, even if there is no basis for anyone to rationally or legitimately disapprove of them.

    I take it that you yourself were educated in more or less traditional schools.

    And, you have now gone on at great length about how you do indeed feel precisely the sorts of defensiveness and anxiety about others’ disapproving of you that I initially described. And, curiously, when I have tried to reassure you that all thoughtful people should be able to see that you are a fine person doing a great job of homeschooling, that has only made you angry.

    This really is exactly what I was talking about in my initial comments many posts ago. I would like my girls to grow up not feeling this sort of anxiety and, as you put it, “defensivesness” about possible disapproval from other human beings. There is always the possibility that some silly busybodies may disapprove of what one does, no matter what one does. It is just emotionally paralyzing to be anxious and defensive about that throughout one’s life.

    Of course, if someone comes up with rational reasons to criticize our actions or attitudes, we should take them seriously. But, you have not suggested that anyone has offered any reasoned criticism of your homeschooling – as I keep saying, you seem to be doing a great job.

    So, I continue to maintain that a reason of key importance for homeschooling is to help raise our kids so that they do not become so sensitive to possible disapproval from others that they are defensive about such disapproval, even though the disapproval has no rational foundation at all.

    I think this is especially important for “gifted” kids, who, as we all know, may face multiple experiences of disapproval throughout their lives, disapproval that is based on ignorance or envy. I think we need to do what we can to raise our kids so that they are bothered as little as possible by feeling anxiety or “defensiveness” towards such ignorant and ill-considered disapproval.

    You’ve helped me illustrate my point very nicely, and your and my exchange has helped me understand better the whole issue.

    Again, though it may offend you, you have my best wishes, I am not being condescending in hoping that you do not worry unduly and that you are happy, and I look forward to learning more from exchanges with your in the future.

    Kriston, I really am on your side.

    Most sincerely,


    #12133 - 03/20/08 04:55 AM Re: Defensive Homeschoolers? [Re: EandCmom]
    OHGrandma Offline

    Registered: 01/05/08
    Posts: 830
    Originally Posted By: EandCmom
    Well I have to pipe in here. I live in the South and I am sure this is part of the regional thing but the homeschoolers around here are for the most part the evangelical type and they are rather closed minded. They don't want their children in the public schools because they don't want "precious" to mingle with the great unwashed.

    I even had a mother say to me that she let her daughter go to school for awhile but she just had to pull her out because when you are exposed to that "filth" all day the "stink is going to rub off" on you. And me with my kids in public school!!! I didn't know what to say to be honest.

    Until I came to this board I had a VERY negative view of HSing. I have to say that you all have changed my mind. I think in certain instances HSing is the best thing to do for a child. But before I came here that wasn't my take on HSing at all.

    OK, since we're all airing what we makes us defensive, negative comments about the Christians who homeschool is my pet peeve.
    What that 'Christian' said about pulling her child out and using the analogy of 'the stink rubbing off' was just plain wrong. But there are Christians who have wrong attitudes and should be called on it, I have no problem exposing hypocrisy and wrong attitudes.
    Where I have a problem is mocking them like this, "they don't want "precious" to mingle". As far as pulling a child for religious reasons, how many of you have pulled or considered pulling your child because the school authorities told your child he could not read certain books, or discuss certain subjects? That is what happens to Christians. And I'm not even talking about trying to tone down zealous, evangelizing types, I mean things like my GS8, then 6, was told he could not read his Bible in school. Are you all OK with censorship, as long as the book being censored is one you wouldn't read?
    And don't forget, if it wasn't for the Christian homeschooling movement, it likely would not be an option in much of the USA. It is not an option in several European countries.

    OK, off my soapbox and off to 'pastries with parents' at GS8 school this morning.

    #12138 - 03/20/08 05:58 AM Re: Defensive Homeschoolers? [Re: OHGrandma]
    incogneato Offline

    Registered: 10/25/07
    Posts: 2231
    Loc: up in my head.......
    Dave, wow, that last post of yours was truly condescending. Do you really not see it? I'm sure we're all glad you showed up here, you have a lot of really interesting things to say.
    I look forward to more invigorating and spirited iconversations with you.
    You really know how to beat a dead horse, though. I really thought my DH had the market cornered their, but you make him look like an amatuer.
    What did that poor horse do to you? The horse is dead, Dave. Put the club down.......walk away.......let the horse rest in peace.


    #12143 - 03/20/08 06:33 AM Re: Defensive Homeschoolers? [Re: incogneato]
    questions Offline

    Registered: 11/24/07
    Posts: 864
    Yes, stereotypes are hurtful, no matter what they're about. And usually the insults are unintentional.

    There's plenty I'm defensive about when it comes to DS, mostly because he doesn't fit the mold around here and I have received unsolicited comments from family and friends about what's wrong with him, or what's wrong with my parenting. And even though the experts have reassured me that there is nothing wrong with him or my parenting of him (and that in fact, it is to be admired), I still second-guess myself when faced with comment du jour. And it certainly doesn't make me feel any better when I hear "he's so much better." Still the same kid as far as I'm concerned. (And most of these comments have to do with sensory and attentional issues that my parents and teachers at his old school do not understand or accept - like covering his ears when he was 5 in the planetarium just before they showed the big bang, or not wanting to go to birthday parties until he was in first grade). And around here, I'm defensive about our decision to send him to PS, I'm defensive about considering HS, etc., etc. But I'm getting better. Still, the comment that makes me bristle is when someone comments about someone else's child that he or she just needs discipline. How do they know what that child needs?

    I wish I could ignore it all, but I can't. I envy those who can. Still, it won't keep my from my appointed rounds... (that's what they say about the post office, right?)

    #12148 - 03/20/08 07:03 AM Re: Defensive Homeschoolers? [Re: questions]
    Kriston Offline

    Registered: 09/19/07
    Posts: 6145
    Loc: Midwest
    I don't like people bashing any group, OHG. Everyone has a right to his/her beliefs, and I support that right with my vote and with the way I live my life. Belittling or demeaning the beliefs of anyone is inappropriate.

    I don't like the attitude or the exclusivity of a lot of evangelical Christian HSers, though. I think people do have to learn to be in the world (if not of the world), and too many times I think the really conservative Christian HSers are really separationists. Their lives, their choice, but I think it's wrongheaded. I prefer inclusion. I would never join a HS group that asked me to sign a statement of belief, even if I agreed with the group's religious beliefs. I disagree with the whole notion of exclusion in that context, and I won't support it.

    FWIW, I must confess that I also have mixed feelings about the Bible-reading in public school. It depends upon how it's handled and when it's happening, but having religion in any form in the schools does make me personally uncomfortable. I think separation of church and state benefits us all by protecting our right to worship as we please. I'd be equally uncomfortable with a child reading the Koran or Scientology or Satanic tracts or any other religious/spiritual works at school for anything other than an historical study--and that usually doesn't happen until college-level classes. Teachers just aren't equipped for the situations that might arise.

    Imagine some other religion were the dominant religion in our country, and kids were reading their religious works at school and your GS is a Christian. Wouldn't that be exclusionary and uncomfortable for him? That's what I'm thinking about here.

    Now, if GS is off by himself reading at recess without making a big deal about it, I don't see a problem with that. But I don't like the idea of Bible studies in school (even at recess) or reading the Bible for class.

    That's just my opinion, of course, and I submit it respectfully. But I want to make it clear that it is because I think a person's religious beliefs are so important and so sacred that I would prefer that people who are not trained to handle those beliefs stay far away from them. To me, that means keeping religion and public school separate.


    #12153 - 03/20/08 07:17 AM Re: Defensive Homeschoolers? [Re: Kriston]
    OHGrandma Offline

    Registered: 01/05/08
    Posts: 830
    Kriston, I understand your views. The problem is, my GS was reading his Bible during some free time, he'd just gotten it and was carrying it everywhere. But because the teacher and other staff were so afraid of violating 'separation of church & state', and having someone offended by a 6 year old with a Bible, that they violated his right to read what he wanted.
    As for Christian HSers having separatists views, don't we all protect our children from experiences we think they are not old enough or mature enough to handle? I disagree with separating ourselves from the world in the way some Christians do, because I don't think that's the example we were given by Jesus.

    OK, I'm going to quit on this thread, because I didn't want to get into religious debates, not the time or place here for that. I said what causes me to get defensive, and that's all I intended to do on this thread.

    #12154 - 03/20/08 07:19 AM Re: Defensive Homeschoolers? [Re: OHGrandma]
    Kriston Offline

    Registered: 09/19/07
    Posts: 6145
    Loc: Midwest
    Yes, I respect what you're saying. I hope I haven't added to your defensiveness with my response. You know how much I like and respect you, I hope. smile

    #12172 - 03/20/08 08:36 AM Re: Defensive Homeschoolers? [Re: Kriston]
    Ania Offline

    Registered: 02/07/06
    Posts: 802
    Loc: Home :)
    Originally Posted By: Kriston
    Imagine some other religion were the dominant religion in our country, and kids were reading their religious works at school and your GS is a Christian. Wouldn't that be exclusionary and uncomfortable for him? That's what I'm thinking about here.

    I live in Utah. Mormon land. Majority of students in PS are LDS. We are not. When my kids went to a private/parochial school, it was not a problem, when they switched to charter I had an eye opening experiences. LDS people are very nice but they concentrate on evangelization. Especially the youth of the church. After all, all men 18 and older are expected to serve a 2 year mission for the church.
    In PS here missionaries are allowed to do volunteer work. I do not agree with that. They are, after all, missionaries! Public HS have a special free period built into them, so the kids can take seminary class. Every day for four years. Technically, the seminary building is not connected with PS but it is righ by or across the school from it. The school willingly accomodates that. I do not agree. But I live here by choice. It is a great and beautiful state.

    #12173 - 03/20/08 08:38 AM Re: Defensive Homeschoolers? [Re: Kriston]
    Lorel Offline

    Registered: 08/22/07
    Posts: 970
    Loc: New England

    Step away from the horse, Dave, step away!

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