In response to someone's complaint that we didn't answer the question she asked, Karen Pielke Santos wrote:
You know, my hackles have gone up when I have heard answers to the hidden questions. I have gotten defensive. I wanted an answer to MY question, not realizing that there really were deeper aspects of the question I had, that would eventually lead to the question I originally asked.
ANGRY QUESTIONS WE COULDN'T ANSWER:
This is too long to include in total, but it's a good read and I'll link to the full topic below.
Someone wrote to a moderator of Radical Unschooling Info:
Am I allowed to ask a question? I will tell you what I wish to ask. I wish to ask: "What if the gifts that are in the house, were not gifts I have chosen to give to my kids, but are things grandparents have chosen to give my kids? This, having to do with my having to clean up the mess because I do not like my house messy. Joyfullyrejoicing.com says I must see having the house clean as my desire, not as the desire of the kids. I have in-laws who choose to fill up our house with toys that I have to pick up. How is that fair? Shall I then direct my response at the in-laws, instead of at the kids, and ask them to please not buy toys?"I'm going to quote a few responses, but there were over a dozen, good ones.
You're looking for rules and defenses. We're trying to give you softness and generosity.Robin Bentley:
My daughter would love to have her grandparents around to give her gifts. Three of them are dead now and she misses, in particular, my parents' loving consideration of who she is and what she's interested in.Jenny Cyphers:
It seems totally ungracious to me. Those kids have grandparents! Those kids have grandparents who are willing and able to buy those kids things! People find the weirdest things to be upset about! Your thoughts should turn to abundance instead! ....Joyce Fetteroll:
*** What if the gifts that are in the house, were not gifts I have chosen to give to my kids, but are things grandparents have chosen to give my kids? ***Lisa J Celedon:
You're complaining that your in-laws give your kids too many toys?! Too many gifts?! I'm not trying to be rude, I'm just completely astonished. What a wonderful gift!!!! What a great savings for you! Toys are wonderful tools for learning and sources of joy and fun. I suggest thinking about how to be grateful for their generosity. Not all grandparents have that in them. ....Jonathan Ford:
As someone who had a child with a life-threatening illness, and know parents with children with life-threatening illnesses, I know I am grateful every moment I have with my kids, and I am grateful they are alive to make a mess. They are now at an age where they do clean up after themselves, and even clean up MY messes without asking, but that came from years of me cleaning because *I* chose to clean, and learning to let go of my perfectionist, Type-A control over having to have a spotless house (impossible with children, no matter how hard you try!). Enjoy your gifts, both the living ones and the inanimate ones.
Rage doesn't set the stage for unschooling.
"it wasn't really what I was asking."
"Wow, this list is seriously oversensitive and honestly the responses by many of you all are also insensitive and downright rude. It was a small joke, as it wasn't really what I was asking and felt that particular response was trying to prove something to everyone about how well her children did."
That was someone whose name I didn't save, who had young children and has asked about college. She was insulting Pam Sorooshian for responding kindly and in detail to her question in a way that others saw clearly WAS a good response to the original question.
The discussion, some public, much on the side, continued, with some good writing by Joyce about how discussions work. It's here: "LOL" and then saying we're rude for objecting to being laughed at