#52 of 50, of The Unschooling Life Podcast
Over the past six months, I've had a lot of great conversations with Sandra Dodd, and enjoyed the opportunity to interview her about unschooling.Sandra :
You're getting me in trouble, too.Amy:
What did I do that got you in trouble?Sandra:
You said I was a teacher, you said I was a minister. I'm amused but, you know— but I'm just such a magnet for people to get pissed off, it just stuns me. And it can't be the way I smell, because it happens at a distance. You know, I mean, it's like when some people get bullied because of the way they make eye contact or their posture or something, you know? When I'm in person like, you know, people laugh and it's all light, but somehow at a distance I can make people bristle up.Amy:
Yeah, that's one of the things that I admire about you, is that you're willing to keep doing it, even though so many people lash out at you, just completely irrationally and annoyingly in a way that I would have no patience for. It would just make me cry and hang up on them and never talk to anybody again.Sandra:
When I was in my twenties. It did make me cry.1:47
Amy [to Sandra]:
Do you want me to take the word "minister" out of there? I liked it.Sandra:
I think it's fine.Amy:
We need to be ministered unto we just need a minister who has something worthwhile to say.Amy [to listeners]:
So for the record pretty much time I've ever said anything about Sandra, I did not have her permission, and I might have said it wrong and you should blame me, not Sandra.Sandra:
I kind of do want to define it, but I kind of want them to figure it out. And I kind of want to trap people who want to say, "But you didn't tell us what principles are." I was like, "Next! You're out. Send your kids to school."2:46
This conversation was about allowing your kids to be whoever they are and Sandra shared some things about her son, Kirby.Sandra:
I might have resented that Kirby was much sweeter, nicer, more mature, more sparkly when he was out with another family than he was when he was at our house. But I told Keith early on to remember that we were not raising him to stay home his whole life. We were raising him to go out into the world. And so I just saw it as a fascinating aspect of his life, and instead of complaining to him "Why aren't you nicer at home? Why are you so nice to them and not nice to us?" I didn't. I didn't talk to him about it at all. But I watched him. It also meant he was relaxed at home. He was able to see home as the place where he could shut down, turn it off, recover from the way he was in public.
I thought I was going to do some episodes about parenting myths—something like that. So I asked Sandra some questions along those lines.Sandra:
There are sayings that people repeat that they've heard, that their parents repeated because they heard, and one of them is "I'm not a short-order cook."9:17
I asked Sandra what she would say to parents who want more alone time or "me time" or adult time.Sandra:
It seems that the best thing a parent can do to feel whole and good and recharged is to be a really good parent. Because if they say, "This is frustrating me, and I feel crowded by you, and I don't like you, and I need to get away from you," and they go and they do some "me time," the child is wishing for the mom, doesn't know why she's been left alone. They're paying for their "me time" and they're paying for their babysitting and when they get back together, it's not as loving and smooth as it might have been if the parent had stayed and found a way not to be frustrated by the child—to love the child.Amy:
I'm Amy Childs, and thanks for listening to the unschooling life podcasts.Sandra:
Read a little, try a little, wait a while, and watch.
Unschooling, and "Me Time" accounts of what it felt like to really 'get it' Read a little...