It's not Personal

Learning to participate in discussions of unschooling ideas

When the quote says "this group" it might be the Always Learning discussion at Yahoo, or Radical Unschooling Info at facebook, or any of several mailing lists and forums that came before. This style of discussion has been going on since the mid 1990s, and I've been active all that time. Some others have been for nearly that long.

These are not new ideas.

Sandra Dodd


Joyce Fetteroll, December 2014 (Sandra's emphasis):
I think it helps to see this forum not as a service to all unschoolers but as a continuation of the kind of help that Sandra, Pam (Sorooshian), I and many others found most helpful when we were beginning unschooling.

The audience is all those who enjoy pulling apart ideas to understand *how* unschooling works so they can apply the ideas to their own unique family. The audience is unschoolers who found they couldn't get their needs met in social forums.

This group really does work best for people who can separate themselves from their ideas. The idea of "have to" exists in the world separate from the people who hold it. Here we can pull that idea out and examine it all on its own, turn it around this way and that. By understanding the pros and cons of ideas, people can make more thoughtful choices.

But if someone keeps clutching the idea, feeling the idea is part of them, that examination feels personal. For those who can't step back from their ideas, it's more comfortable just to read. For those who can't even watch other's ideas pulled apart without feeling it's an attack, they're probably looking for a social forum to begin with.

One thing that keeps me responding after all these years is because I understand. To me it makes perfect sense *why* parents get stuck on certain thought pathways. I understand why they can't see the view the child sees, why school colors their vision, why fear colors their vision. I enjoy helping them see the walls they thought trapped them are just obstacles. I enjoy helping them find a path around the obstacles.

But it can't work unless people see the obstacles aren't part of who they are, unless they can step back to observe the obstacles objectively so that they can let go and move around them.

Radical Unschooling Info AND READ the intro Easily Offended Logic