Homeschooling D-I-V-O-R-C-E With Children

8 11 2010

Homeschooling knows divorce. It threatens the end of homeschooling and even when that bullet can be dodged, it always means CHANGE and there’s lots for Thinking Parents to think about. Some examples are seared in my memory, most recently Unity-n-Diversity and there was the North Carolina cult classic with the mom’s best friend libeling the custody judge online in the name of homeschool defense, remember that one?

Also, how can we fight over divorce without first fighting over marriage, and when or whether there will be children of that union — conceived, born, adopted, kidnapped, abandoned — and how they are to be treated within that family, by society and by the courts?

See “Blurring Family Value lines Might Benefit Us All” and “The Most Important Lesson Whatever We Call It”:

For just one example, I have a good friend IRL I hadn’t seen in years, until Monday. Her life has changed dramatically in the ten years I’ve known her. When first we met, she was a happy, secure, homeschooling SAHM with two beautiful and smart little girls, wanting to start their own home-education Brownie troop. We spent a lot of time together because Favorite Daughter was the same scouting-curious age, and as moms we had values in common, including independent thinking and libertarian leanings.

FavD and I soon lost interest in scouting but my friend continued as troop leader, field trip organizer and general supporter of other families learning without school. She added two little boys to her brood, and the last time I saw her in person was at the fire house field trip, with her fourth child in a big sling, not slowed one bit. The oldest was a joy in pigtails, helping not just her mom but all the smaller kids on the tour.
Until.

From that time to this, this settled and happy mom faced a difficult divorce and the need to find a family-sustaining career for herself, which meant getting different kinds of educational “support” than we typically dwell on in independent unschooling circles — child care and legal advice and putting the older kids in public school after custody challenges and even “going back to school” herself. I know there were times she agonized about her kids, but not whether they mastered the state learning standards and passed algebra — it was what they were learning about life!

Then day before yesterday, we ran into each other while I was out helping FavD buy some supplies for her parttime job. . .

So homeschooling may be happy to see a new resource online:

Introducing HuffPost Divorce: Everything You Wanted to Know About Divorce But Were Afraid to Ask

I’ve always thought that, as a country, we do a lousy job of addressing how we can do divorce differently — and better. Especially when there are children involved.

That’s why I’m so excited about the launch of HuffPost Divorce. Inspired by HuffPost editor-at-large Nora Ephron, who knows a thing or two about the subject (see Heartburn), our newest section will tackle the topic from many angles, providing insight, resources, community, and some comic relief to those impacted by what Nora, in her new book, calls the Big D. Our goal is to produce a fast, fearless, highly interactive guide to the profound changes divorce brings. So whether you are divorced, divorcing, or just curious about how others manage the complexities of divorce, check out HuffPost Divorce. Breaking up is hard to do… but reading about it isn’t. Let us know what you think.

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