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I think I presumed too much with yesterday’s post. Like, the fact that not everyone has had the experience of taking three poorly home schooled children into their home and trying to get them up-to-date with the real world.

Now, let me say this before I get home schooler’s hate mail. I have seen parents who did an EXCELLENT job home schooling. It can be the best thing in the world for some kids. I would have probably thrived with it, myself.

However, that is the best of home schooling and what my three guys had was, well, NOT the best of home schooling. It started out fine. I think it is much easier to home school a third grader than it is a thirteen year old. By the end, with ten (at the time they left) children in the home, schooling became a three month out of the year project.

It is not just the home schooling, it is the isolation of the life they lead and when they hit that age, where they should have had a friend nudge them and say, “You stink, go use deodorant.” or even when they should have had a friend to ride their bike round and round the block with, there was no one there.

What they had was work, and chores, and work. That is not to say work is wrong for a kid. Far from it. I think kids need chores and to learn responsibility and to do things for others. BUT, kids also need fun and they need friends. They need to talk to kids their own age without mom listening into every conversation or picking and choosing those friends.

These guys have had a real hard time telling the good guys from the bad guys in town and they have never ridden their bikes around and around the block with their twelve year old friends. But, the youngest guy is putting a lot of miles on driving his car up and down the drive.

I guess it is something he needs to get out of his system. So, we try not to say too much about it but do tell him when to stop.

All three of these boys have a Clinical Psychologist to talk through their problems and when you have been locked in a closet for a month, with a five gallon bucket for a toilet, there is a lot of talking going on there. Hopefully!

And, to further clarify, when you have grown up like that, isolated from a range of other kids your age, except for the occasional other home schoolers, you can be a bit behind in maturity and drive your car up and down the drive instead of driving your bike around the block.

Now, in fairness to him, he is really excited to have a job and now a car he has purchased with his own money. He will be getting his permit soon and he will be in heaven, because, in Brown County, “a man ain’t a man without a truck.”

Go figure!

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