I ran across this blog post today and appreciated the two questions she poses to homeschoolers at the end. I decided I wanted to answer them too.
As a former homeschooler, I am noticeably capable and mature because:
I grew up with a lot of responsibility that by necessity taught me many practical skills. I read copious amounts of books. I quickly learned to read another’s emotional state and intuitively guess what they need as a necessary survival skill. My performance level is high in most sorts of pressured or crisis circumstances. My communication skills, mostly verbal, were sharpened by constant high -pressure communication through my growing up years.
What I wish people really knew about me was:
I can find almost no motivation to do anything without a crisis. My health and current emotional weakness (Panic attacks, PTSD symptoms) are proof of the many years that I was strong in extreme circumstances. In spite of how it may look on the outside, I am unsure and insecure in all my social interactions. My ability to read and respond to someone else’s emotional state is almost to the level of compulsion; sometimes, I don’t know if I’m doing it out of care for the person, or to protect myself, or only out of habit. The only relationships I feel I have a good grasp on are ones with authorities or subordinates. I don’t understand people who don’t have a strong survival instinct, or don’t seem to think about survival one way or the other. If I dropped you as a friend, it isn’t because I didn’t like you; it’s because I literally do not understand how people are supposed to make, keep, or interact with friends.This is one of my greatest regrets and it constantly haunts me.