Does the Good REALLY Outweigh the Bad?

Let me start by saying that I am not trying to insult or judge parenting decisions made by anyone. I honestly believe that we all do our best with the knowledge that we currently possess and that parenting is a series of doing-the-best-we-can-moments.

Having said that…I have been wondering about emails and comments that I have received from scared and worried parents about their twice-exceptional children.

Some, decided to make the leap and either unschool or home school their children.  Many shared feelings of uncertainty and worried that they wouldn’t be able to do it.  They made the change and now, it seems from the correspondence that they have shared with me, there are few regrets about their decision.

I don’t begin to suggest that homeschooling is an easy option, but for some it is the only option.

The part that leaves me puzzled is when parents of 2e kids continue to send their children to traditional brick and mortar school where they say their child’s needs are not being met.  They are horrified by the treatment of their children and the inflexibility of the educators that they come up against.

Most that communicate with me, say they continue to tolerate this treatment and inequities because of their child’s social needs.

Again, I’m not judging because I too, believed this for a while; however, how long should “social interactions” be the only reason for several hours of tedious, mind-numbing dribble, that doesn’t celebrate interest or strengths and only focuses on challenges with intense purpose.

When does the bad outweigh the possibility of some good?

If I’m bring honest, my son’s previous school wasn’t really meeting his academic or social needs.  They didn’t know how to educate him, even after we tried to educate them on the topic of twice-exceptional children. For longer than we should have, we bought the whole “he needs to be here to socialize with kids his own age” story.  He had some friends that he enjoyed at recess and they saved spots for him at the lunch table; however, at some point, those small moments were not significant enough to make up for the rest of the very long, very boring, very painful day.

When he stopped caring about his friends and begged us to act, we knew the bad couldn’t be erased by a few minutes of good.

There are many reasons why families feel they don’t have the skills, finances, or patience to home school. Again, I’m not judging, I just want people to pause and reflect and really think about “socializing with same age peers” as a valid argument for hours and hours of misery.

Just saying…

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6 thoughts on “Does the Good REALLY Outweigh the Bad?

  1. We have been on our journey for awhile (my son is in 6th grade), and I completely understand what you are saying in your post. We tried an ‘unschooling’ mixed-grade level type school with my son, and we tried homeschooling using an online school, but we did not see significant benefits from either of those choices for our son’s specific situation. Ultimately, it came down to where he wanted to be…back in school with the kids he has grown up with and plays sports with. (Not the right decision for all 2e kids, but it is what we decided was best for ours.) Thankfully, in middle school with Honors classes, Accelerated classes, and Super Accelerated classes, he is finally learning new information at school. I just wish that he could get the help for his social/behavioral/executive functioning skill issues that he needs. It has been a very slow fight, but we are still fighting. :-)

  2. Isn’t it much easier to put your head in the sand, go to work, make more money, and be a “productive member of society”? Yes. That’s why people make that choice instead of foregoing the monetary and staying at home to homeschool and figure it all out. It may also be the stigma of homeschooling (that many homeschoolers reinforce). It IS a tough decision, but it’s also your child and it’s one that deserves honest contemplation instead of blinders.

  3. For socializing, most areas have a lot to offer homeschoolers. After all, weren’t we all told in school that we were not there to socialize? We’re trying a one day a week homeschool connections program through the school district in the next county over. They do art, music, pe, science experiments, etc. The goal is to provide the activities that are hard to do at home or require a group (like theater) and allow for lots of socializing. The classes are small and the teachers provide lots of social support for those who struggle. They also mix ages, which is known to promote better social behavior than just being with kids the same age. I’ve visited and observed and am really hopeful. You might look into similar programs in you’re area. If it turns out well, we think it will be worth the once a week drive.
    And I agree, hours of misery just aren’t worth it. Even if we didn’t have this option, there are lots of other opportunities to socialize. We consider his academic education and hiss socializing

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