I was fed up.
Like. Up. To. Here.
The attitude. The tears. The whining. The chaos.
I was done with homeschooling. D-O-N-E, done.
Full of determination, I walked my daughter into the elementary school office and started the paperwork.
This was not just one of those “I quit…but not really” moments. This was real.
That same night, I sat in a required class for taking on a CASA child. CASA, or Court Appointed Special Advocate, is someone who volunteers to spend quality time with a child in foster care to make sure they are doing well mind, body and soul. (Read more about CASA here)
I’m listening to the teacher talk, but all I can think about is my little girl. The one who was positioned to be dropped off at public school the next morning.
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As the teacher droned on, I listed all the reasons I homeschooled. I mentally calculated the benefits and disadvantages of both public school and homeschool. And like a bolt of lightning, I realized that I didn’t want to send her away.
Then, I panicked.
I excused myself from class and called my daughter in tears. Profusely apologizing for putting her through the entire ordeal. The next morning, I called the elementary secretary who assured me that nothing had been done yet.
Sometimes I wonder if that wise elementary school secretary had gone through this same scenario before; smiling but knowing that I wouldn’t go through with it.
Maybe not, but either way no paperwork had been filed nor had any information even gone into the computers.
Relieved we started our fresh new homeschool day.
My heart cringes at this story. It’s almost one I’m tempted not to share because it shows my worst side.
I want everyone to believe that I’m the homeschooling mom that has her stuff together.
But I need to share my story because I know somewhere out there is someone in the exact same boat. Leaning a little too far over the railing. Tipping into the dark sea. Wanting to give up homeschooling.
I want to share the reasons why many moms, like me, want to quit homeschooling and how to fix them.
5 Reasons Moms Want to Quit Homeschooling
I’m a doer.
I love to serve…to a fault.
I wear myself out with 500 different slightly important activities that I rarely have the energy for the more important ones.
After one CASA child, I have ceased volunteering with the program.
If I can’t be truly there in the way that I really want to for my own children, no matter how noble, I can’t take on a child that is not my own if it’s causing me to want to quit homeschooling.
Because I wasn’t over-committed anymore, all the stress that had compounded on me was immediately lightened.
Allowing Ourselves an “out”
Sending my children back to public school had always been an option.
If thing got too much, I could just send them back.
And on days that it really got rough, I would tell my kids that.
There is nothing that will make you want to quit homeschooling more than having an “easy backup plan.”
Public school had to be permanently decommissioned if homeschool was going to work out for my family.
From that day on, I promised myself that threatening or thinking about quitting homeschooling was no longer an option.
Not Having Fun
When I think back on my public school experience, I remember work, for sure…but I also remember a lot of fun.
Field trips, field day, Jump-Rope-For-Heart and Thumbs-Up Seven Up (seriously…who didn’t absolutely love this game?)
But in our homeschool routine, there was very little (if any) of that.
Day in and day out it was work, work, work.
And all work and no play makes Jack dull…then a little bit whiny with a punch of eye rollings.
I’ve tried my best to work more fun into our day. It’s a struggle well worth the effort.
Read Next: 10 Things You’ll Regret Buying for Your Homeschool Room (Guest Blog at BeautyintheMess.com)
Not Getting Adequate Support
Sure, my mom, my sister, and my husband supported my homeschooling endeavor, but there is nothing that can compete with someone that is in the trenches with you.
Because I had so many small children, I had failed to push past the temptation to sit at home all day.
Not only had this cut my daughters off from social activities, but it had deeply wounded my support system of other homeschooling moms.
Surrounding yourself with other homeschooling families can help you weather the storms of homeschool, especially when you want to quit homeschooling.
I’ll admit, it definitely got easier once my children got older, but getting not only outside the house, but around other homeschoolers goes against the desire to press through all your scheduled curriculum for the week.
Forgetting Why We Homeschool
My reason for homeschooling is different than most. It’s not religious or because I’m scared about the “evil public education system.”
But shifting my focus on all the things that were going wrong with my homeschool day made me lose focus on my original reason for homeschooling.
Short-term problems can and will derail your long-term goals if you let them!
Once I got reacquainted with my reason for homeschooling, I was able to concentrate on the long-term benefits of homeschooling.
How to Survive From This Day Forward…
Are you like me? Do you want to quit homeschooling?
Have you over-committed? Allowed yourself an “out”? Are you having fun? Or are you unintentionally avoiding fellowship with other homeschooling families who could give you support and reassurance? Forgotten your original reason for homeschooling?
Take heart. You are definitely not alone.
Any homeschooler worth their salt has wanted to quit at one time…and maybe even taken their children to the elementary school office like I did.
From this day forward promise yourself to:
- Say “no” more often to things that interfere with homeschooling.
- Recommit to homeschooling once and for all.
- Have some fun (like now!)
- Ask for help when you need it.
- Write down reasons why you homeschool and put that list where you can see it daily (like next to the toilet paper roll in the bathroom).
The day I almost enrolled my daughter into public school taught me how to avoid the desire to want to quit homeschooling.
I hope you take comfort in some of the words on this blog and carry the homeschooling goal that you’ve set out to accomplish.
[Be] confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ; Philippians 1:6 (NKJV)
Homeschooling moms are totally equipped to finish home educating their children.
You are smart and love your child.
I believe that you can do it.
If you’ve ever had days when you’ve want to quit homeschooling and can add some wisdom to the conversation, comment below. People learn from reading comments too!