Monday, January 28, 2008

Unschooling..letting kids dictate their own bedtime

Recently I posted a question to an unschooling board in response to a conversation about letting the kids dictate their own bedtime. It seems there were many Moms who did this. This was my question, the response that I got, and how I responded back..
~Question:
I am new to the group and am enjoying all the conversations! I was reading about letting the kids stay up and I have a question. When do you get time in with Dh? Right now we put the kids to bed at 7:30 and then we have a snack and play cards. We talk about the day and Dh then starts work on his computer stuff(a hopeful home business) and I either go to bed or clean up etc..If we tried this with the kids up, we wouldn’t be able to have an adult conversation. I don’t mind the lack of me time because I get up early in the morning so that I have me time but Dh can’t stay up till 12 because he has to get up for work. So, when do you ladies spend time with your husbands? Thanks!
~Response I got:
those of us as children who were sent to bed because of "adult time'
are tricked into thinking this is some type of sacred time-- at my
house it is called family time. What is wrong with family time? You
have to get out of the mindset that YOUR life begins when the
children are to bed. OUr life IS the family and there is nothing
about adult time that the kids can not be part of.

~How I responded back:
I disagree. My husband comes before my children. It’s important to us to have this time to talk about our relationship and where God is taking us. This is also the time that we are intimate. That obviously can’t be family time. LOL When my children choose to leave our home I want to know my husband. I want to look back and remember the intimate quiet times with him. As for the kids, he plays with them for an hour before bed. He chases them around the house, helps them play the wii, and teaches them how to draw 3d in blender. So, he is VERY “family” oriented. It’s not like he doesn’t want to spend time with them. He takes the baby at night(he’s 4 months) and always has. You see what I am trying to say? I feel like that there should be clear definable times when Mom’s and Dad’s relationship should be nourished and refreshed. I am not trying to start an argument or anything, just asking to see how others structure this time in with letting the kids stay up. Thanks.
P.S. I don’t feel like my life begins when the kids go to bed. I feel like it’s just another part of the day, one I hold close to my heart because this is the man that God has given me and my kids. I get to know him better. This is our 10th year of marriage so I can say, without a doubt, that God holds us together. It’s at these quiet times also that we seek him and his will for our family. We include the kids in prayer, etc.. but at these times, it’s us before the Father.

Now, for those unschoolers out there, what is your response? I really am just curious, not really trying to argue. For anyone else out there who wishes to respond, be my guest!

****Editing to say Thanks to all those folks who emailed me and supported my thoughts on this subject! The point was made that we can unschool without unparenting.

1 comment:

AIMEE said...

Amen! We can definitely "unschool" without unparenting. Although I didn't have high control over my children's learning/how they learned, I did/do have strong boundaries for eating, waking, sleeping....I was relaxed in learning not parenting. I have never read it, but there is a book called "Christian Unschooling" by Teri Brown that I've heard is good. I love all of Dr. Mary Hood's books on Relaxed Homeschooling.
So fun to meet you tonight :) What a joy! Must get together!