July 15, 2006 at 5:24 am #2002
Hi ladies! I hope that everyone’s weekends are treating you well. I thought I would take a moment to post on this forum and (hopefully) get some encouragement.
I am a homeschooling mother of one son, age 7. We just started down the homeschooling road this past winter…. we are currently on summer break.
I have always been able to stay at home with our son, but I also had many other activities going on in my life. Before we pulled out son from the public school system, I was a full-time student at the nearby university (going on three years) and I also had occasion to work a part-time job here and there. I really enjoyed getting out of the house and interacting with a variety of people… I am a true extrovert and I seem to thrive when I have lots of people to interact with.
So, when we began homeschooling my son, I stopped taking classes. I felt so convicted that we were making the best decision for my son. I also promised myself that I would enroll in evening classes. Long story short…. I have yet to enroll in a class.
I cannot stand staying at home with my son 24/7… with occasional outings. I cart my son to and from activities and it seems that the only people I ever see are my husband, son and other busy mothers. I feel very isolated and resentful…. I feel very conflicted as well. While I believe that homeschooling is a wonderful thing, I also feel that I am giving up my life. I find that I frequently resent motherhood and I even fantasize of “leaving it all behind”. I think I am bored out of my mind.
Can anyone relate?!? I hope so. I REALLY feel strongly about homeschooling, I just cannot seem to adjust my thinking. I feel like I am broken… that it is just me… that I need to get over my feelings and smile. Problem is, most morning I wake up feeling plain depressed.
Thanks for any input.July 15, 2006 at 3:47 pm #3010
I can’t exactly relate, but your message made me want to give you a hug and some encouragement while you wait for someone with more expertise to respond. I have a 21 mo-old DD. She came to work with me every day until last week. I have cut my hours back and so she is in daycare on Tues and Thurs for 7 hrs each day while I work. (We are in two separate buildings on the same campus.) I thought it would be an easy transition for me, but it has actually been pretty hard for me. She seems to really like it. I do think it is the best thing for us for now… but like you I find that the enthusiasm I had for the idea before it was implemented doesn’t quite match my enthusiasm now that I’m in the situation.
Homeschooling is a great challenge! My sister homeschools her seven year-old too. She has managed to continue her own schooling to be a nurse in the evenings. I really encourage you to enroll yourself in school again.
Also, does your neighborhood or local school system have regular meetings for homeschoolers set up? We are lucky to have a children’s book store in my neighborhood. The owners are totally committed to the community and offer free meeting space for homeschooling families throughout the year. It is a great place for moms to re-energize.
Well, I’ve probably gone on long enough here. Hang in there! Maybe starting each day with a rosary will help give you strength.
JulieJuly 15, 2006 at 3:48 pm #3011
Hi and welcome to the forum!
I give you SO much credit for your sacrifices in homeschooling!
My personality is such that I am just TOO disorganized to handle homeschooling (we are going on child #5 plus I work at home for DH…it’s really all I can handle in my usually chaotic state!) I always felt that my children would suffer if I homeschooled them because of my inability to handle it! It’s something I would have LOVED to do, though. Seems wonderful!
Anyways, you sound like a very organized, “together” kind of person. Have you considered getting a sitter so you CAN enroll in the evening classes? OR…it actually sounds like you need some grownup interaction (other than people on the “Mommy trail” )
Does working interest you still? It IS possible to find work at home type jobs that allow lots of adult interaction, still. A friend of mine who is also a mom does bookkeeping/accounting type things for a dentist. She is on the phone with insurance companies, etc. a lot, but still is around the kids. She makes her own schedule. Another friend does medical transcription. I do bookkeeping/accounts for DH.
If working doesn’t interest you, I have other friends who have formed book clubs, gourmet cooking clubs, crafting clubs, etc. You know, things to keep your mind active.
I don’t think what you’re feeling is all that uncommon. I’ve heard a lot of people say it…and I think everyone probably feels it from time to time.
I wish you blessings!July 15, 2006 at 11:49 pm #3012
I think as moms we have to get used to the fact that we do need to give up a HUGE part of our lives as we know it. I’m not saying you can’t or shouldn’t have adult interaction and activities, but I think we need to take the focus of ourselves while we still have little ones at home. Yes, it is a sacrifice but God will bless us. I agree with the previous poster…try joining mom’s groups, get a sitter and do a mommy coffee break with other moms once a week, or something of that sort. My DH works 75 hours per week and I am with my kids 24/7 and I feel lucky that no one else is raising them but me but I quit working once I had my first son so I can’t compare my situation to yours. Everyone has different needs and I don’t think you should feel guilty if you need some time to go out with friends because being depressed is not good for your son, as I’m sure you realize.
Also, do you belong to a homeschooling group? I think that it is really important to hang out with other families who have the same lifestyle/beliefs as you and maybe you can be more social in that route.
I commend you for homeschooling, I’ll bet your son loves being with you each day. You are doing an amazing thing for your family. I’m starting the hs route this year so keep us in your prayers!!!
Where do you live? There might be some moms on here who live close to you that you can get together with!
HeatherJuly 19, 2006 at 12:45 pm #3013
Okay. Yes, I can relate to your situation. Homeschooling is a BIG COMMITTMENT. My question is: What is it in homeschooling that you like?
Most states now have Home School Associations, do you know where to contact this Assoc. in your state? The State Education Dept. should have the contact person/phone number for info. how to get connected. That would help you out enormously!
Second, does your son have playmates? You need to get connected with other mothers with children age ranges close to your son’s. Twice a month make arrangements where you would give your son a few hours playing time with your other mothers children. Then the next month you do the same for her.
Third, MOMSCLUB is a wonderful organization to be in, check it out in your city, town. It is an National and International organization for mothers who are at home with their children. This “club” is designed esp. for you. I was the founder of our Oakville club in St Louis, Mo
we had a wonderful group.
I now live in AL, and there are groups even here. Look on the Web
Best wishes and keep in touch.
BritestarJuly 24, 2006 at 3:20 am #3014
I can relate totally! I, too, am an extrovert and prior to starting to homeschool my 2 daughters, I was NEVER at home. I always chuckled when someone would refer to “stay-at-home” moms because I was never at home – always volunteering.
We began homeschooling when our daughters were in 6th and 8th grades (in 1999). I was very concerned about the change in my lifestyle as well. But, I knew that homeschooling was the best option for our family and I decided that it was where God wanted me.
What helped me is that we have a huge homeschooling community where we live. Actually, there were about 4 different Catholic homeschooling groups in addition to the larger homeschooling community. My daughters are athletes and there was also a very good Homeschooling Athletic group. Much of our social life revolved around the athletics and the Catholic support group. If you have not connected with other homeschoolers yet, I would encourage you to do so. Also, you might try getting involved in a Bible Study at your parish or something else of interest to you. I have discovered that the times in lives when I felt most uncomfortable were opportunities to learn more about myself and grow! While homeschooling will restrict what you do in the daytime, you can fill those social needs you have with programs that go on at night.
Many blessings! Homeschooling is a huge change in lifestyle but it will be so worth it in the long-run.
KathyAugust 3, 2006 at 5:16 am #3015
I am not homeschooling yet–I wanted to send my daughter to private catholic, but of course, I would have to drive a minimum of 45 minutes one way.
BUT, the rest of your post–My feelings exactly! I have two college degrees and my mind is turning into mush.
E-mail me if you want.
Christ’s Peace be with you,
NancyAugust 7, 2006 at 7:09 pm #3016
I have homeschooled, and we’ve done public and
catholic school. My son was happiest in Catholic School, and so was I. Have you checked out CSs in your area? You might find that it is great for your son, and you could have your life back. Homeschooling consumes a person’s life for sure! If it is really making you have thoughts of just “getting out,” maybe Catholic school would be the answer to your prayers. ANd don’t feel guilty about quitting homeschooling; in a couple of years, your son will beg to go to school to be with other kids anyway.August 16, 2006 at 6:24 pm #3017
Hi Randy Mandy,
First I want to say GOOD FOR YOU! I am the Mom of two young daughters (16 mos and 3 mos) so needless to say we haven’t started “homeschooling” per say so I can’t EXACTLY relate to your situation although I CAN relate to needing more adult interaction. My husband is in the Army and we just moved again leaving all of my friends behind. Anyways, I’ll try to make this as short as I can and you can take or leave what you want.
My philosophy on schooling is this…..let the children direct most of it. The problem with “home school” is that it is just a recreation of the classroom enviornment in the home. It frustrates mothers and children alike. Since you have so much time with your son, it may help to do things that help you bond AND learn at the same time. That way you wont resent being at home with him- you will ENJOY being at home with him! Go to a pond or creek and catch tadpoles and bring them to his room to watch them grow over the weeks. Look up in the encyclopedia how this happens and what its called. Go watch the clouds one day on your backs and get him to tell you which kinds of clouds he sees. Go to the grocery store and give him a calculater and ask him to add up the groceries or to find the best deal on a product – explaining unit prices etc….My advice would be to keep the study at a desk down to no more than an hour a day – make the rest of your day learning the way it is meant to be – while at the same time tying strings of fellowship with your child.
It is great that you want to continue your own schooling, but do so in a way that will not interfere with your job of teacher to your child. If you are married maybe your husband could watch your son in the evenings while you go to school and take it slow – don’t cram so much in that you feel overwhelmed and frustrated – those feelings are sensed by your son. Remember that what you are doing for your son is the most important thing you could ever do – more important that your own schooling or even friends. God will provide those things to you in due time. Find a group of women who find homeschooling as important as you do and POOF! There are some friends! Anyways, I hope this helps.August 16, 2006 at 9:27 pm #3018
How can you take of your son if you aren’t mentally healthy? If you take care of you first then you will be a MUCH BETTER PARENT.
I’m now you can figure this out!!!! And good luck.
KUDOS for homeschooling—that takes serious guts!! BUT—weigh your options. email me if you want. I too am going crazy sitting at home.
N>September 29, 2006 at 12:29 pm #3019
I understand, really. I also home-school, but unlike many now-home-schooling mothers, I WAS home-schooled. My mother was one of the first to do it, and she did it for the freedom of not having to send us to whatever school happened to be around. (She and my father are Protestant missionaries, and I grew up in non-English-speaking countries.) I knew going into it that I would have to give up massive amounts of time. I have three children, and my oldest is also 7. I have a BA in Communications, and my MA is in Shakespeare. Do I feel like I am wasting my time? Not at all. Is it difficult and frustrating at times? VERY! However, sending our daughters to public school is absolutely out of the question. I wouldn’t send them to public school in the US, let alone here in Japan! The only English-language Catholic school is over an hour away, and it is prohibitively expensive. So I do what I can because I must. It is my responsibility to train and educate my children. Fortunately, my husband is very understanding, and he doesn’t mind my going out with my sisters or something. To keep my mind sharp, well, I write. And I study Latin. I eventually hope to get a degree in Canon Law, so I figured I should study Latin on my own while I could.
I sympathize with wanting to get out. I really do. It is really difficult, and if your husband could manage it, I would recommend your going out without your son once a week, to take a class or to join a club–just to do something to get out of the house. But believe me, this time will not last forever. I’ve been homeschooling since my oldest (now in third grade) was in kindergarten. It goes faster than you would think, and once it’s gone, it’s gone for good.
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