Mostly I just want to fly under the radar, doing my secret unschooling, unparenting thing. (I figure, if “school” means “making kids do all the expected things, whether they want to or not,” then I am unschooling. And if “parenting” means “making kids do all the expected things, whether they want to or not,” then I am unparenting. So be it; come and see the downfall of civilization as we know it, right here.) But sometimes I really would like to tell anyone who will listen, “Hey, I think I’m onto something here. I don’t know why more people don’t know about this. There is a better way — a way with less tension, less hair-pulling, fewer accusations and hurt feelings, less ordering around, less defiance — fewer crazy mornings, no schoolwork after school, no faking sick, no lying, no being held back a grade or fighting for advancement or sitting bored (or confused) for days on end — friendship squabbles and encounters with mean kids, sure, but no daily enforced confinement with bullies without any authority to change the dynamic — and with learning and growth and engagement and enthusiasm and personal responsibility and all that good stuff too, no worries there!”
But I don’t think most people would believe me. I think most people would consider me (depending how generous they’re feeling today) naive or amusing or insulting or dangerous or all of those and more, or else they’d say that’s fine for my kid but it wouldn’t work for theirs or for that kid down the block, or else they’d say that’s fine for now but just wait till my kid grows up to be a friendless, unhappy, irresponsible, ignorant, impoverished failure — so mostly I don’t say anything.
But there is a better way. And I think we’re pretty close to living it.