Mothers who homeschool (let’s be honest, it’s almost always the moms) spend a lot more time with their kids than mothers who send their kids to school. I am trying to figure out if this is a good thing or a bad thing.

Certainly it could go both ways. (And certainly there are exceptions—like the mom who homeschools but is outsourcing it all, which I’m pretty sure Ree Drummond is doing, for example.)

I spend a lot of time coaching people in their 20s about their careers. Invariably these people are lost. That’s simply what life is like in one’s 20s.  And invariably parents are expecting more of the kids and the kids feel bad that they can’t live up to their parents’ expectations. I end up telling a lot of people they have to stop looking to their parents for guidance in a workforce that they’ve never had to navigate. 

And then I think that there must be a lot of parents who are too involved in their kids’ lives growing up. But no parent says, at the end of raising their kids, “I was too involved.” I have just never heard this before. Which makes me think that parents have poor judgment about how much involvement is too much involveement.

When I google this topic, I find, first, that if you type “overbearing” into Google, the first suggestion is “overbearing mother”.  And most of the links assume the mother and child have no idea the relationship is messed up because they’re so used to it.

I found a lot of information about how women with borderline personality disorder choose to homeschool their kids because they want to control everything and they want to be close to their kids all the time. Only 2% of the US population has borderline personality disorder, but it scares me that homeschooling is so appealing to that subset.

I am also heavily influenced lately  by economist Bryan Caplan’s new book about how nature is so much more important than nurture. It’s an argument, I would say, for getting out of your kid’s way. Which is maybe a great argument for unschooling. I’m hoping it is, but I’m not sure.

On the other hand, Retronaut describes a practice in photography where the kids would be held tightly by the mother to insure a tight focus, but the mother is hidden under a blanket. I’m tired of people wanting mothers to fade into the background. I don’t want to do that. I want to be in the pictures. I just want to feel like it’s right for me to be there.