Posted in Home School, Inspiring, Who's the mom here?, Wisdom

All Parents Home School – 4

Mom at work

The Excuses

For what they’re worth

As for our excuses, well…

If we abandon them for a second income, we teach them that money is more important than people are.

If we abandon them for our own “career”, we teach them that motherhood is not worthy of consideration as a career.

If we abandon them for their younger siblings, we teach them that it is okay to start something, something as important as a person, and then not finish it.

If we abandon them for the sake of our sanity, we teach them that God’s grace is not sufficient.

If we abandon them—or if we home school them—we teach them. There is no way out; we have to.

We have to live with the results, too.


photo credit: adventurejournalist


Katharine is a writer, speaker, women's counselor, and professional mom. Happily married over 50 years to the same gorgeous guy. She loves cooking amazing homegrown food, celebrating grandbabies, her golden-egg-laying hennies, and watching old movies with popcorn. Her writing appears at Medium, Arkansas Women Bloggers, Contently, The Testimony Train, Taste Arkansas, Only in Arkansas, and in several professional magazines and one anthology.

24 thoughts on “All Parents Home School – 4

  1. I love this whole series. So many people think that teaching only occurs in lecture format, but parents teach by model, attitude, and reaction, probably among other ways. The model is easiest to see, followed probably by reaction–these things are discussed in many non-Christian parenting books. But attitude… that’s not something many touch on, but you have here, and I’m so grateful!

    This waiting time that your son and I are experiencing, waiting for our family to grow, is a perfect time for me to check my behavior model, attitude, and reaction tendencies. I have a wonderful opportunity to practice what I will someday preach, to address sin in my life, and observe how other mothers react to their children, which is a fabulous learning tool. I also have this… anticipation, this long-term gratification to look forward to that is really transforming my attitude. Sure, I’ve always known that children are a blessing from God, but how much more appreciative I might be after waiting for them.

    This, I think, is the sort of thing that young women should be doing at home, learning to be wives and mothers from their best example: their own mother. I did not have that opportunity, so am doing it now. God has given me this “waiting time,” I think, so I might be a better mother.

    1. Thanks for this kind comment, Victoria! I totally love the love I see in your heart for your future children and for your Blessed Redeemer. He is in the business of restoring the years that the locusts have eaten — on every encounter, I see that beautiful truth in you.
      The joy with which you face each day, the humility with which you backtrack when you find a mistake in your path, and the bravery with which you tackle each task are a source of great peace to me, and at the same time, great conviction.
      If I had been like you, what heights I would have achieved by now!
      But then, I would not have been me. 😉

  2. I removed comments here after researching over an hour on the WordPress help forums. You may express your disgust with me all you want, but we will keep our replies to all the other commenters on a civil word level. We will not call the commenters on Home’s Cool by rude names and we will not berate them for voicing an opinion.

    1. To say “if” is to condition the words that follow.
      Not all parents who send their children to public schools are abandoning them. My words were to those who are, though, hence the word “if”.
      Several of my commenters have stated that giving a child to be publicly educated is not necessarily abandoning the child.
      They did not feel a need to use abusive or insulting language or to disparage anyone, least of all, other commenters.
      I agreed with them. I have not deleted a single comment on the basis of disagreement or argument. The facts are that some people had absolutely no choice but to put their little ones in the public schools, even if they were well aware of all the dangers. I am sure of it. I just haven’t met one, yet.
      Nevertheless, I allow that “if”, fully aware I might not know everything.
      Evidently it was not enough.
      My disparager uses the word “if” similarly. But I am able to wrap my brain around that. It doesn’t bother me to face questioning, criticism, harsh words, judgment, etc., really. That is perfectly clear from several of my comments. I invite disagreement and self-examination, whole-heartedly. It is the basis of our U.S. freedom and of all truth.
      In fact, I would appreciate the freedom to debate anything I have said, but feel forced, instead, to deal constantly with this one tiny issue of safety for my guests.
      If I chose to, I could take offense at disparaging words regarding the Bible, Scripture, Jesus, certain denominations, me, and my commenters. Fortunately, by withholding only three comments, so far, due to attacks on other commenters or to unwholesome and/or inflammatory vocabulary, I can take care of all those targets.
      I do not choose this. It has thrust itself upon me. In a room of concerned people, battling out the several facets of the truth, stands one, heckling, constant.
      I will protect my guests: No attacks on my commenters. This is not hard. Your argument is with me. Do not disparage my commenters.
      I will protect the “general” status of my site: Keep the course language level down to a “G”.
      My site: my rules.
      One more thing: The advantage in any debate usually leans slightly toward the one who has the last word. I have said more than I had time for, given my upcoming social obligations, and now yield to the negative.
      I will check for content, but have finished with comment, here. I must move on for the sake of my family, at least until mid-September.

    2. After more research I have decided to remove all comments from the one disparaging commenter. I have not deleted these comments, but have withheld them as they really added nothing to this conversation, and were mostly aimed against other commenters.

  3. I’m so sorry you had to deal with such harshness. Those of us who read regularly know that you don’t have a heart of judgment. You have a heart to encourage and empower. I know that my own parents didn’t abandon me to the system, but there are those that do. I’ve seen that, certainly.

    Keep doing what you are doing, because you are doing it in love.

  4. Wow!!! ok, my dear advocate and teacher. I never see you as harsh. Although I did not home school my son most of his pre-college years, I knew I was letting the schools influence him WAY more than I was comfortable. The judgmental stance of friends and family (my parents, brothers, neighbors, friends) and snotty attitude I felt that both I and my son would receive if I did homeschool caused me to cave, go against my better instincts, and send him to school. Great emotional and sometimes physical harm and bullying came to him. It took years to undo. If I could turn back time I would have done it differently. If I had had your blog and guidance, I would have been stronger. I just KNOW that your words, your advocacy WILL end up protecting some family somewhere. You tell it and keep telling it my loving friend.

    And even if I had been “incapable” of teaching certain subjects, if I had been creative enough, I know I could have found someone else that home schooled to collaborate with.

    1. Wow. What a comfort you have been, here! Thanks. You know, that is partly what our support groups were for — for getting help with things we might need help with. In math, not my strong point, I had a dear friend who never could have children. She taught math on a college level and never did mind my questions about zero factorial, and all. 😀 After the 4th child in algebra 2, I got where I could answer the questions enough to get them going down the road. Yay! I wished I had been taught it in P.S., but alas! Ah, well. 🙂 Thanks again!

  5. I will have to say that your words stung quite a bit. Yes, you used the word “if” to begin each sentence. However, every word that you said was judgemental. If we have a second job we are abandoning our children and teaching them that money is more important. How about food? Shelter? Sometimes, single moms have to “abandon” them because their “donor” left them and the offspring to rot. If we have a career that is not a sahm we are abandoning the children. Obviously you have not met my friend, the very important doctor at a prominent children’s hospital in the big city. If we abandon children for younger siblings. You’re telling me that I should not have but one child? If we abandon them for the sake of our sanity…you’re telling me that I cannot go to the grocery store alone to get a moment’s peace? That my husband and I cannot go out on our much-needed date night? How about just to have a break? Have you never wanted “me time”? By your rationale, my Calgon time would be abandonment if I do not allow my children to jump into the tub with me.
    With my opinion on your blog out of the way, I will tell you the real reason I am here. On Facebook, there was a woman (apparently the one that had such harsh words for you earlier) that said something about your blog being against all those who do not homeschool. For this first and only post that I have read, I do believe that she could be right. That you are against anyone not homeschooling. Now, I love my children’s teachers and have only had one bad run-in with the overworked professionals in the past seven years. You better believe that I was all over that one teacher “like white on rice”. There is a difference between non-homeschooling and abandonment. A difference between having a career and abandonment, “saving your sanity” and abandonment. I believe that if you truly did not “mean it that way” when I took your comments to be judgmental and offensive to non-homeschoolers, you would have worded your posting differently. Did you deserve to be called all sorts of names and have this long argument over something that could have been settled more like adults than middle schoolers who have learned to “trash talk”, absolutely not! Do hard-working parents that make choices that are different than yours deserve to be called “bad parents” for “abandoning” their children? Absolutely not! Do not lump all of us non-homeschooling, date night-going, career women together with the stay at home moms who are always at the gym and have a maid and a nanny for each child and rarely actually touch their children let alone spend any quality time with them. THAT’S abandonment!

    1. I understand. And in part, I agree. Please grant me time to marry off my son and I will return with more substance. Thank you for your comments, which are sane and well-worded. Thank you very much for that. I hope you read the entire series, but no matter. I will return, mid-Sept.
      Thanks, also. for the heads-up on fb. Sighs. I will survive. Please feel very welcome to read and comment here any time.

  6. If you have a decent school system, it’s important for kids to go to school. The best life lessons are learned from their peers, My parents sent me to the same public school my children go to and I turned out to be a successful business person who also has the advantage of being a stay at home mom as well. Oh, and I never once felt that I was being abandoned when my mom sent us (my 3 brothers and I) off to school. I’m here to send my boys off to school in the mornings and I’m here when they get home in the afternoons. It’s very important, to me, for my boys to learn proper social skills and being among so many peers is the best way for them to learn. When they grow up and go out into the “real world” they are going to meet all kinds of people and be in all kinds of situations and learning how to handle these situations from a young age is very important. I will not be able to fight their battles or shelter them forever, I do feel like this blog was definately putting down those who send their children to public schools, but I don’t take any offense. I am positive that public schooling is the best choice for MY children. If anything happens and that changes, then my boys’ learning methods will change too.

    1. We homeschooled our children until they went to college. Once they’d been in college for a semester, they both came to me privately and thanked me for homeschooling them. DD was in nursing school and her observation was that everybody else was ‘tired of school’. She was just getting started!

      I didn’t want my children to learn their social skills from their peers. I wanted them to learn from me and they did. 🙂 When young, they could carry on a conversation with a younger child or an elderly person. Many marveled at their social skills, but I found this to be the norm for homeschoolers, not the exception.

      My children grew up in ‘the real world’. They had academic learning in the mornings and worked jobs in the afternoons.We have a farm and they started buying their own clothes at 10yo, learning to budget for what was needed. Their peers in the world of ‘school’ didn’t even know what tax was. At no other time in their lives will kids be in an environment where they are stuck in a room, sitting at desks next to kids who are the same age as they are. Society is diverse, not all the same age. My children were in the real world and handle themselves wonderfully now that they are in their 20’s and STILL in the real world.

      I now teach in a school. I’m so very thankful my children didn’t have to have that experience. It often kills the joy of learning. I’m with very young children, teaching them to read. I do my best to give them the benefits my own children had, but can’t. They are handicapped, learning from other foolish children. Many think the teacher is the most important person in a classroom. Not so. Your child can have a GREAT teacher, but will more than likely listen to the little foolish kid sitting next to him.

      I didn’t mean to write a book. 🙂 I just wanted to share my experience.
      I hope you have a good evening.

    2. To JTice: Thanks so much for commenting calmly, here, and Welcome to Home’s Cool.
      As you can see, I am at T-12 and counting for my son’s wedding.
      Have just a few minutes to implement an idea, here:
      As an example of my love for those who use the public schools, may I refer you to this series:

      Note: A reader derives the most benefit from reading an entire series, btw. Thanks so much!

  7. Okay. My last words on this series, now that the wedding is over. Great wedding, by the way!
    I have a dear friend who contracted cancer while homeschooling her six children. She put the older teens into a more public setting and continued homeschooling the little ones. I do not know why she did this, since if she’d kept the teens at home, she could have rested more, instead of feeling she had to chase “school” activities. And she would have had some assistance with the babes. See?
    There is a woman somewhere around Kansas City who homeschooled as a single mom and made ends meet by sewing for the public. At home. And by doing her own repairs. See?
    It is possible to homeschool, no matter what awful thing raises its awful head. Where there is a will, there is a way. I firmly believe that.
    However, I also know that some people simply do not have whatever it takes to see that, and I respect that. There was a time when WE could not see it. OUR children were in the public. I do not hate public schooling parents; I was one.
    I just know what a pain it was and really, really, really want to use any possible means to convince anyone who can get it, to start NOW.
    (Of course, since the semester has begun, some will have to wait until January to start, but I will post in December about how to start in the middle of the year. Easy.)
    I do not believe anyone out there truly thinks home-schooling moms do not bathe or keep up their relationship with their husbands. We did normal life ALL THE TIME. We just did not think, and still do not think. that sending little ones off to a state institution was or is normal. It warps the kids. We know that from trying both ways.
    I see the dangers, which are totally and rapidly increasing, worth any enmity, to warn others of the total folly of putting a child in that atmosphere.
    I am sorry if anyone has hurt feelings over this.
    But I BEG, BEG, BEG you to consider the feeling of a child, and the feelings you will have after you see the results you will get.
    Children who do well in the state institutions are exceptions. Please think.
    That is all. I am not addressing this series again.
    Thanks, everyone, for you patience and a special “THANK YOU” to those who disagreed, calmly and rationally and patiently. I send you hugs. I love your bravery, in this venue, and your consideration. All I can say is, “Thank you.”

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