A couple of months ago I was approached by CNN to write an article about homeschooling for their Schools of Thought blog. My first reaction was "Yes!Yes!Yes!", my immediate second reaction was "Why me? Who am I to write for CNN?" Afterall, I am just a homeschooling mom blogger. I am certainly not an expert on homeschooling. Like I've said many times before, I fell into this thing and am finding my way every single day.
I talked to my husband about it and thought long and hard about it. I finally decided to do it. Mostly because I thought it would be a great challenge for me.
The folks at CNN asked me for a few topic ideas. I came up with topics such as why I chose to homeschool, the challenges of homeschooling, myths about homeschooling and a few others. They chose myths about homeschooling.
Since the title of the article would be "My views: ......", I decided that would be exactly what I wrote about. I wrote an article that shared my own views and experiences. I did not write an article full of facts or statistical data. That is not what I set out to do. I set out to give my opinion. I wrote about the issues/myths I faced as a homeschooling parent. Not anyone else's.
I was very happy with the end result. I happily sent it off to CNN and they loved it as well.
This morning I received an email from CNN letting me know that my article was published and it was a front page feature on their blog. I was so excited. I had never seen my own writing on anything other than my own blog. This was a big accomplishment for me. Those feelings of pride and happiness quickly turned into feelings of frustration, anger, and defensiveness.
I've always known that homeschooling is a hot topic. I just never realized how close- minded, bigotted and down right mean people can be. I sat at my computer in tears as I read many horrible comments; attacks on me personally and people completely twisting my words.
I wanted to respond to those people, to let them know that there were no statistics because these were my opinions, my personal experience. I wanted to let them know that I am not trying to control what my child learns, instead I want to open up her world to all the possibilities. I wanted to make them understand that I respect all religions and I am not a religious zealot. I realized that none of that would matter. I cannot change people's minds.
I sat and read through all of the comments and there were over 350 by the time I decided to close the computer. I respect people's opinions and the fact that not every one agrees with homeschooling or any other topic. My problem is not the fact that people expressed differing opinions. I was distraught by the level of rudeness and ignorance.
Amidst all of that, there were positive comments; homeschooling parents that have faced some of the same things. I appreciated those comments. There were also comments from non homeschooling parents who are objective and non judgemental. I welcomed their points of view as well.
Here is my article if you are interested, CNN. I had hoped to dispel some ridiculous myths about homeschoolers. But the truth is, those close-minded people will never accept any ideas other than their own. They will always be close-minded. They will always judge without knowing. They will always be afraid to challenge the status quo.
After all is said and one, I still believe that my decision to homeschool is the right choice for us. I am grateful for all of those who support homeschooling and I welcome healthy dialog on the topic.
As always.....Happy Homeschooling Adventures!