People often ask about the more challenging side of homeschooling when they are thinking about planning their homeschooling journey. They don’t always need to be convinced about the benefits of homeschooling, about socialization, or about the ability to get into college, but they just want to know some of the harder aspects of homeschooling so they are prepared.
The top three stresses I see commonly in homeschooling families include:
1. Finances. Many (but not all) homeschooling families are sacrificing an income so one parent can be at home to homeschool. Financial stress is real and many homeschooling families are on a shoe-string budget as far as food, housing, having one car instead of two, and plan their homeschooling adventures around the library or what is free.
2. Insecurity. If a child isn’t “catching on” or learning well or things in general aren’t going well and that child is in school, the school is not usually blamed. After all, the folks at school know what they are doing, right? In a homeschooling family, these same situations can lead the homeschooling parent to feel a lot of insecurity or possibly even being blamed, especially by extended family members. Is it my fault? Maybe I should be teaching according to a different (philosophy, curriculum, materials, presentation)? What am I missing? What am I not doing correctly?
3. Having very little time to oneself to focus on such things as basic self-care. Almost every homeschool parent I know will tell you they love their children and love homeschooling, but wish they had a little bit of time to themselves. Homeschooling is a full-time job. Balance can be elusive!
What are the things that you have found most difficult about homeschooling?