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seemesew

*UPDATE* When to call it quits with our group.

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*UPDATE IN COMMENTS*

I need some advice thinking this through by unbiased people, lol! I have been in a common wealth group for 2 years and 1 year a couple years before that so 3 years total. Overall I love the group and the consistent families involved. However, I also felt extremely burned out by the end of the year (2nd week of May) so burned out it has caused me a lot of health issues that I am just now starting to feel a bit recovered from. Our group is small but every family has at least 4 kids-6 kids which makes teachers sparse this year, especially since the teachers are moving up to the teen classes. I have loved the bit of social my kids get since I am an introvert and struggle getting out of the house but I am realizing that my kids are a bit that way too, though not to the extent I am, so its not the problem I originally thought. They run it like a business but they are all moms with a lot of kids that do a lot of activities (and I mean a lot, 4h, scouts, horticulture, another weekly group, and another weekly group, field trips, sports (yes plural), acting classes, occasional art classes and other things that come up they want to do plus the commonwealth activities) so the school is not organized and many times things were announced we had to go to with 2-3 days notice and it wasn't something you could "miss". 

Another thing that is really hard for me and my husband to swallow is the fees, and I know its not bad compared to others, but we paid close to $900 for the tuition and books, and that was mostly for my oldest. As the kids get older the classes are more expensive so they can send teachers to training. This year it will be over $1000 and i still have to get basically a full curriculum for all my kids except 1, not to mention any additional activities we want to do which we can't I will have nothing left after that, (I'm selling everything extra we have now from furniture to books to pay for tuition). I could spend much less, cover everything, and we could do some extra things we want to do if we don't go.

I'm tired of feeling like I am in an extended public school that we have to "call in sick" if we can't come, or stick to someone elses schedule, or worry about all the other things that encompass going to a school. Oh and i hate the cleaning of the building afterwards, often people "have to leave early" so more gets put on those who stay.

My oldest really loved the extra movies,  activities, and chatting with friends outside of classes when they did school activities, but this last year most of the kids did make up work at home for the required movies instead of going, and even then more than half of his class dropped out which left 4-6 kids when there had been 13-16, so he didn't get the experience he had, had the years before. He is the only one not really doing TJED and is the only one ready to move on to the next set of classes, they are either very immature, can't read well enough or write, or too busy with 4H so he is starting to feel ready to move on. He can start college classes at our cc so I have other options for him.

My 12 year-old wants do the next class and I want him too as well and technically he can go without me, but I know how many of the moms there feel about that, so it makes me think he can't go without some hurt feelings if I'm not there. His friends there are not ones he hangs out with outside of classes because those families are the busiest and working out a playday is hard. He has many public school friends that take the time to keep being his friend so not going doesn't affect his closest friendships at all.

My 10 year-old is Autistic and struggles doing any of the classes that aren't meant for 5-7 yearolds and honestly I'm not sure they'll let him stay in that age group (and I don't blame them one bit he is too old to be with those kids). It is however the only school he has ever liked because his teacher he had last year let him roam and catch lizards. I think he'd be fine not going.

My 5 year-old will be devastated if we stop. his best friend goes and he loves the classes. 

The 2 year-old doesn't care, lol, as long as mom is there shes good.

Pros of the group: My kids friends go there. We get out 1x a week. my oldest two have teachers other than me for most of their work. My youngest son loves being there his friends. A bit of social for me with other moms. They have 1 class I really want my 12 year-old to take.

Cons: I have to teach/supervise for 3+ hours (nonnegotiable) 1 day a week. It feels like a poorly run business or mlm for me. You have to do certain things to have a say. I have to go to a parent night. I have to go to training's. I have to be a member of the committee since members are few. My oldest 14 is feeling outgrown since none of the other kids can advance to the next class. I don't get any social outside the group since it drains me so bad. I no longer do thing I enjoy because I feel so stressed all the time about going on Mondays to school.

After all that, if you're still reading, the thing I'm having a hard time with is leaving something I've been in so long, my kids have grown so much from, and I've put so much work into just like that. From what I've written I think I'm over it and ready to stop going...but do you think that's what I should do? Is that really the best choice or am I still tired from last year? I have a few weeks to decide...

Edited by seemesew
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Give yourself permission to rest.

After you've done so, think about what next year would look like if you filled that time other ways.  What would you do?  Would you replace some of the social activities (like look for one where your 5yo's friend goes?)  What else is in your area to look at?

I think, once you've looked at all your options, you'll find where you need to be next year.  You can always reassess the year after that and the next year and so on.

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It's ok to stop. It's ok to decide you need a break or have had enough. We are not going back to our co-op next year. DD has outgrown it. I don't love it, and the academics aren't worth the loss of an entire day twice a month. I did experience some negativity from friends, but it's our decision to make, and we've made it. 

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Would another option be a middle of the road choice to leave the 14yo home working during co-op? 

That doesn't address you personal over-extendedness or the cost. Just thought I would put that out to think on.

It is fine if you quit, do what is best for you. Plus, iIf you do it now they have time to readjust as needed.

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2 hours ago, seemesew said:

They run it like a business but they are all moms with a lot of kids that do a lot of activities (and I mean a lot, 4h, scouts, horticulture, another weekly group, and another weekly group, field trips, sports (yes plural), acting classes, occasional art classes and other things that come up they want to do plus the commonwealth activities) so the school is not organized and many times things were announced we had to go to with 2-3 days notice and it wasn't something you could "miss". 

This year it will be over $1000 and i still have to get basically a full curriculum for all my kids except 1, not to mention any additional activities we want to do which we can't I will have nothing left after that, (I'm selling everything extra we have now from furniture to books to pay for tuition). I could spend much less, cover everything, and we could do some extra things we want to do if we don't go.

Oh and i hate the cleaning of the building afterwards, often people "have to leave early" so more gets put on those who stay.

My oldest really loved the extra movies,  activities, and chatting with friends outside of classes when they did school activities, but this last year most of the kids did make up work at home for the required movies instead of going,

He has many public school friends that take the time to keep being his friend so not going doesn't affect his closest friendships at all.

My 10 year-old is Autistic and struggles doing any of the classes that aren't meant for 5-7 yearolds and honestly I'm not sure they'll let him stay in that age group (and I don't blame them one bit he is too old to be with those kids). It is however the only school he has ever liked because his teacher he had last year let him roam and catch lizards. I think he'd be fine not going.

My 5 year-old will be devastated if we stop. his best friend goes and he loves the classes. 

This is not really run like a business--you are a paying a lot of money to have to cater to other people without them considering you. The other people seem to be too busy to make it the priority that you are making it, and then you are stuck catering to their limited availability, picking up messes when they leave the building, and putting up with their doing make up work for things that are best experienced as a group.

You oldest is experiencing diminishing returns over time, and this is going to continue to get worse. 

2nd oldest is set. 

Your 10 year old is having fun because he's being allowed to not be part of the group. I have a kid with ASD and other issues, and while having him roam and be happy is great, I had other goals for him. You are paying money for something he could do at home without the potential flack for being in the "wrong class."

Your five year old will love something else. That's how 5 year olds are.

I'd cut the cord.

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1 hour ago, kbutton said:

This is not really run like a business--you are a paying a lot of money to have to cater to other people without them considering you. The other people seem to be too busy to make it the priority that you are making it, and then you are stuck catering to their limited availability, picking up messes when they leave the building, and putting up with their doing make up work for things that are best experienced as a group.

I had the read the first part a few times to let it really sink in because it is exactly spot on. I don't do much (in my mind) but everything I do, do gets undivided attention. And about the group activities you're right they are activities that are best experienced by a group! I hadn't really thought about it in those terms.

You oldest is experiencing diminishing returns over time, and this is going to continue to get worse. 

I think so too. The other kids don't really care for the classes because they have other interests.

2nd oldest is set. 

Yes he is you're right!

Your 10 year old is having fun because he's being allowed to not be part of the group. I have a kid with ASD and other issues, and while having him roam and be happy is great, I had other goals for him. You are paying money for something he could do at home without the potential flack for being in the "wrong class."

This is something I have worried over and it is really spot on. He needs more than the group can give him and even if it could he won't do it in that setting. 

Your five year old will love something else. That's how 5 year olds are.

Yes he will and there are other things we can do for him that he will love just as much.

I'd cut the cord.

You have hit my sore spots right on. Everything you're saying is fairly accurate and I think I needed to hear it as hard as it is for me.

The other thing I've been thinking about are the reasons we started homeschooling in the first place. One of which was so we could do more learning as a family and grow closer together. The way things were set up last year all my kids were separate on everything, because of the common wealth's class assignments, and we couldn't work in as much family learning as I would like. I feel like a bit of selfishness (though I'm not sure that is quite the right word) has crept in and if they don't think its interesting they don't have to learn about it because its "their" education. And while I agree to some extent there is this feeling of...I'm not even sure I know the words to say, but it isn't helping our family come closer together, its doing the opposite.

I now need to figure what to say to them about us not going, yikes!!

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4 hours ago, HomeAgain said:

Give yourself permission to rest.

After you've done so, think about what next year would look like if you filled that time other ways.  What would you do?  Would you replace some of the social activities (like look for one where your 5yo's friend goes?)  What else is in your area to look at?

I think, once you've looked at all your options, you'll find where you need to be next year.  You can always reassess the year after that and the next year and so on.

Thank you! I have been resting and I have not even thought about the group much until now and only because registration is the first week of August and I need to let them know to find another teacher before too long if I don't go.

I really appreciate the list of things to think about so us not going doesn't end up being wasted time instead being used wisely.

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2 hours ago, hippiemamato3 said:

It's ok to stop. It's ok to decide you need a break or have had enough. We are not going back to our co-op next year. DD has outgrown it. I don't love it, and the academics aren't worth the loss of an entire day twice a month. I did experience some negativity from friends, but it's our decision to make, and we've made it. 

Thank you! I needed that permission ❤️

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2 hours ago, SusanC said:

Would another option be a middle of the road choice to leave the 14yo home working during co-op? 

That doesn't address you personal over-extendedness or the cost. Just thought I would put that out to think on.

It is fine if you quit, do what is best for you. Plus, iIf you do it now they have time to readjust as needed.

I think if I did anything at all with the group I would only have my 12 year-old go. He is the only one really wanting classes and I don't have to be there with him like any of the younger ones.

Yes doing it sooner than later I think would make it easier to come back if we decide to next year.

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So, it's not a support group. Not sure what a "common wealth group" is, but I understand that it's similar to a co-op.

I say let it go. Your dc will all find other friends, you can do your own outings/field trips, or find a support group (rather than a co-op) to do some social activities with. Stay home and do what you wanted homeschooling to be in the first place.

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It sounds like you're getting a lot of the disadvantages of school (somebody else's schedule, last-minute changes, not a good fit for your 10yo's needs and abilities), paying for it, and having to work there as well. I think what you are paying for this could pay for activities that will suit your family better, and it sounds like there are a lot of good options for social opportunities around you. I would let the folks running it know that your family is going to take next year off from participating.

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17 hours ago, Ellie said:

So, it's not a support group. Not sure what a "common wealth group" is, but I understand that it's similar to a co-op.

I say let it go. Your dc will all find other friends, you can do your own outings/field trips, or find a support group (rather than a co-op) to do some social activities with. Stay home and do what you wanted homeschooling to be in the first place.

Yes its like a co-op but with classes based on a certain philosophy, somewhat like classical conversations.

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9 hours ago, whitehawk said:

It sounds like you're getting a lot of the disadvantages of school (somebody else's schedule, last-minute changes, not a good fit for your 10yo's needs and abilities), paying for it, and having to work there as well. I think what you are paying for this could pay for activities that will suit your family better, and it sounds like there are a lot of good options for social opportunities around you. I would let the folks running it know that your family is going to take next year off from participating.

Yes, yes, yes all that! I think having you guys say I could do the same if not better at home rather than going has helped. I know its my decision but hearing others pin my situation exactly helps me see its not just me, I am not exaggerating, and my experience is valid.  

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I would drop it like it's hot.  Wow, that is expensive and time consuming and then to also be inflexible and poor return... AND forced volunteering, I would hate that.

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For me it would be a no-brainer. No co-op is worth your health. Seriously! There are so many other ways to help your kids get some social time that will be a lot less strain on you (choose an interest for each one--art classes, sports, music classes, a youth group, 4h--there are other options.) 

Honestly, I also feel that no co-op is worth dictating my homeschool too. I homeschooled so I could HOME school. Not so I could get back into a different kind of rat race with lots of outside activities and lots of responsibilities for me on top of homeschooling. If you loved it and it didn't impact your health, and felt it enhanced your homeschool, that would be one thing. To me it just really seems like the cons way out-weigh the pros. We homeschooled all the way through with NO weekly co-op. I only did a bi-weekly co-op one year, mainly for a speech class for my kids in high school. Even every 2 weeks kind of cramped my style, LOL, but I made it work! I liked to protect my homeschool time and not have interruptions though. I did do a "Friday Friends day" though--every Friday afternoon we went to someone's home or had friends here and just hung out--I got to spend time with a friend too. Low stress and great for socializing! We schooled a few extra weeks so that it was easy to school 4.5 days a week and still get our time in, and we all looked forward to friend time each week. 

Anyway--see what works for you, but I wouldn't put your health on the line again. 

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OK, I did make it all the way through and it's a LOT, it sounds tiring, and you have a lot on your plate and five kids anyway...

BUT I will just say the one thing I always say in these situtations:

It is NOT EASY to find a consistent group of friends and peers to hang out with as a homeschooler! Especially as they get older kids need a good positive peer group to bounce off of, and social interaction. 

There are MANY homeschool kids who do certain types of sports and activities that really puts them in a way of a lot of positive interaction.  BUT there are JUST AS MANY who have rather lonely teenagers.  You may think, Oh my kid will make friends and see people here or there.  But if they don't already have friends and feel accepted and happy in those other activities, it is very hard to break into things and be a part of them at that age.

I do feel that your co-op is a little bit of overkill and a heck of a lot of work....but is it possible to keep sending the kids without being so involved?  Can you sit down with the board and share that you are just on burnout mode, and need a season of rest, but don't want your kids to miss out?  I realize if every mom said this every time they would have no one left.  BUt even elders of churches go on sabbatical every so many years!  🙂

Another idea is to join some other things first before leaving/and/or burning bridges with this co-op.

If you do decide to take a break, I would say that you don't say one single negative thing to or about anyone or anything and just say "I am exhausted and need a rest period."

Also, do you have to join for the whole year or is it two semesters?  If it is two semesters that woul dbe fantastic because you can explore other options during the first semester and then go back for the second...obviously then you'd only be able to do electives but that would be better than feeling like you'd have to take the whole year off.

It sounds like a really tiring way to run a co-op.  I am so lucky ours is a NFP business, run by two people with many volunteers.  Rather than feeling like we are all stuck being overly involved the two that run it draw a paycheck and the rest of us just volunteer and mind our business 🙂 It's awesome.

Or, can you just send your oldest two since they are used to going there, and at an age where making new friends is harder?.... and then you can do things a bit differently with your younger ones?  aka find them sports and 4h or other programs that would be less time consuming for you?  

 

Edited by Calming Tea

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On 7/12/2019 at 1:20 AM, parent said:

I would drop it like it's hot.  Wow, that is expensive and time consuming and then to also be inflexible and poor return... AND forced volunteering, I would hate that.

I also hate the forced volunteering.

 

On 7/12/2019 at 6:07 PM, MerryAtHope said:

For me it would be a no-brainer. No co-op is worth your health. Seriously! There are so many other ways to help your kids get some social time that will be a lot less strain on you (choose an interest for each one--art classes, sports, music classes, a youth group, 4h--there are other options.) 

Honestly, I also feel that no co-op is worth dictating my homeschool too. I homeschooled so I could HOME school. Not so I could get back into a different kind of rat race with lots of outside activities and lots of responsibilities for me on top of homeschooling. If you loved it and it didn't impact your health, and felt it enhanced your homeschool, that would be one thing. To me it just really seems like the cons way out-weigh the pros. We homeschooled all the way through with NO weekly co-op. I only did a bi-weekly co-op one year, mainly for a speech class for my kids in high school. Even every 2 weeks kind of cramped my style, LOL, but I made it work! I liked to protect my homeschool time and not have interruptions though. I did do a "Friday Friends day" though--every Friday afternoon we went to someone's home or had friends here and just hung out--I got to spend time with a friend too. Low stress and great for socializing! We schooled a few extra weeks so that it was easy to school 4.5 days a week and still get our time in, and we all looked forward to friend time each week. 

Anyway--see what works for you, but I wouldn't put your health on the line again. 

I think our style is similar I do feel cramped and rushed to do what I want or feel we should do. My health definitely needs to be a bigger priority this year. I love the idea for a friend day and that really sounds so much more personable to me and builds better friendships in my experience so far. 

 

 

6 hours ago, Calming Tea said:

OK, I did make it all the way through and it's a LOT, it sounds tiring, and you have a lot on your plate and five kids anyway...

BUT I will just say the one thing I always say in these situtations:

It is NOT EASY to find a consistent group of friends and peers to hang out with as a homeschooler! Especially as they get older kids need a good positive peer group to bounce off of, and social interaction. 

There are MANY homeschool kids who do certain types of sports and activities that really puts them in a way of a lot of positive interaction.  BUT there are JUST AS MANY who have rather lonely teenagers.  You may think, Oh my kid will make friends and see people here or there.  But if they don't already have friends and feel accepted and happy in those other activities, it is very hard to break into things and be a part of them at that age.

I do feel that your co-op is a little bit of overkill and a heck of a lot of work....but is it possible to keep sending the kids without being so involved?  Can you sit down with the board and share that you are just on burnout mode, and need a season of rest, but don't want your kids to miss out?  I realize if every mom said this every time they would have no one left.  BUt even elders of churches go on sabbatical every so many years!  🙂

Another idea is to join some other things first before leaving/and/or burning bridges with this co-op.

If you do decide to take a break, I would say that you don't say one single negative thing to or about anyone or anything and just say "I am exhausted and need a rest period."

Also, do you have to join for the whole year or is it two semesters?  If it is two semesters that woul dbe fantastic because you can explore other options during the first semester and then go back for the second...obviously then you'd only be able to do electives but that would be better than feeling like you'd have to take the whole year off.

It sounds like a really tiring way to run a co-op.  I am so lucky ours is a NFP business, run by two people with many volunteers.  Rather than feeling like we are all stuck being overly involved the two that run it draw a paycheck and the rest of us just volunteer and mind our business 🙂 It's awesome.

Or, can you just send your oldest two since they are used to going there, and at an age where making new friends is harder?.... and then you can do things a bit differently with your younger ones?  aka find them sports and 4h or other programs that would be less time consuming for you?  

 

I really, really appreciate your thoughts! I do have some of the same concerns about a consistent group of friends and I'm not sure how to navigate that. My older two are the ones who actually have friends outside this group and my younger ones do not (my older two went to public school longer than my others and have friends from there). My younger 2 are especially hard as all their friends are in the group. I haven't had time to get to know others due to this group, but I am worried about the future for them with no backup in line right now.

It isn't always a two semester group but this year it will be (at least for my 2 oldest) due to the type of classes they are offering this year. I could send just them and I am still thinking it through if that is what will work best.

My plan is to discuss this with one of the board members (Your advice is great about the negative comments by the way!) I haven't been able to get with anyone as of yet because of their schedule and I think this conversation is one I need to do in person. I am hoping to come to some kind of...agreement or something, but I'm not quite sure what I want yet.

 

 I feel relieved at the thought of not going, so incredibly relieved, but then fear comes that my kids and me will miss something, or I will get to January and wish we had done the group after all. I do know for sure I can't go I need this year off. I guess my decision is whether my big boys should still go as technically they can without me. 

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11 hours ago, seemesew said:

I feel relieved at the thought of not going, so incredibly relieved, but then fear comes that my kids and me will miss something, or I will get to January and wish we had done the group after all...


It's only for one year. If you really feel they missed out and that the co-op is the best thing for you all, you can always go back and do it the following year. One school year off from the co-op is no big deal.
 

11 hours ago, seemesew said:

...  I do know for sure I can't go I need this year off. I guess my decision is whether my big boys should still go as technically they can without me. 


Perhaps consider framing the question from a different perspective: "What outside activities and friends will my big boys miss out on if I enroll them in this co-op again?"

Because, the $$ you'll have to spend to enroll them in the co-op, and the time you'll have to invest in driving them back and forth, will take away your ability to have them involved in other things. And that driving time also disrupts and takes away from ability to homeschool younger children while older children are at the co-op. Money, time, and your energy are all limited resources; what opportunities help you best invest wisely?

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If your big boys have consistent time with friends outside of this group, then at least a semester off makes sense.

For your younger boys, I would consider trying to find them outlets where they might make consistent friends without this exhausting co-op.  They have some time especially at their ages, to find a niche somewhere.  Scouts, swimming 4H, sports, whatever you might find less time consuming and exhausting. 🙂 

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2 hours ago, Lori D. said:


It's only for one year. If you really feel they missed out and that the co-op is the best thing for you all, you can always go back and do it the following year. One school year off from the co-op is no big deal.
 


Perhaps consider framing the question from a different perspective: "What outside activities and friends will my big boys miss out on if I enroll them in this co-op again?"

Because, the $$ you'll have to spend to enroll them in the co-op, and the time you'll have to invest in driving them back and forth, will take away your ability to have them involved in other things. And that driving time also disrupts and takes away from ability to homeschool younger children while older children are at the co-op. Money, time, and your energy are all limited resources; what opportunities help you best invest wisely?

These are valid and good points I keep forgetting! I can do other things if I am not doing this group. There are even other homeschooling groups that are casual with lotsof activities and you come as you can with only some needing an rsvp. I keep forgetting about the driving aspect as well that will be 30 minutes there and back, twice, so it wouldn't save my sanity at all.

 

1 hour ago, Calming Tea said:

If your big boys have consistent time with friends outside of this group, then at least a semester off makes sense.

For your younger boys, I would consider trying to find them outlets where they might make consistent friends without this exhausting co-op.  They have some time especially at their ages, to find a niche somewhere.  Scouts, swimming 4H, sports, whatever you might find less time consuming and exhausting. 🙂 

You're right. I'm getting cold feet almost like its as big a decision as me trying to decide to homeschool all over again! We have other groups that are not commitment heavy and I could do other types of lessons with the money I save (I have to keep reminding myself of this over and over again!).

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55 minutes ago, seemesew said:

These are valid and good points I keep forgetting! I can do other things if I am not doing this group. There are even other homeschooling groups that are casual with lotsof activities and you come as you can with only some needing an rsvp. I keep forgetting about the driving aspect as well that will be 30 minutes there and back, twice, so it wouldn't save my sanity at all.

 

You're right. I'm getting cold feet almost like its as big a decision as me trying to decide to homeschool all over again! We have other groups that are not commitment heavy and I could do other types of lessons with the money I save (I have to keep reminding myself of this over and over again!).

 

Absolutely, my big concern was your older boys not having consistent time with friends (notice I do say consistent, because calling and scheduling get together becomes impossible as teens get busier and busier.... but it sounds like your boys do.)

Younger kids can easily find their niche and then once they do just stick with that activity, whether it's swimming scouts, 4H, whatever.  Keep in mind all activities require parental involvement and also volunteering.  Swim teams generally require you to attend about 5 meets per year and work pretty much half the day....4H requires you to participate as well, although they generally let you get your feet under you before asking too much...scouts doesn't necessarily require your hubby to be involved, but if he is not, the boys will feel left out and miss out on things...no matter what you do there is a commitment from mom.  But most of my commitments have been less exhausting than what you describe.  (basically a whole day every week plus attending meetings and volunteering in other ways)...

Just for clarity's sake what do your other boys do, consistently, that helps them see their peers?

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On 7/15/2019 at 12:27 PM, Calming Tea said:

 

Absolutely, my big concern was your older boys not having consistent time with friends (notice I do say consistent, because calling and scheduling get together becomes impossible as teens get busier and busier.... but it sounds like your boys do.)

Younger kids can easily find their niche and then once they do just stick with that activity, whether it's swimming scouts, 4H, whatever.  Keep in mind all activities require parental involvement and also volunteering.  Swim teams generally require you to attend about 5 meets per year and work pretty much half the day....4H requires you to participate as well, although they generally let you get your feet under you before asking too much...scouts doesn't necessarily require your hubby to be involved, but if he is not, the boys will feel left out and miss out on things...no matter what you do there is a commitment from mom.  But most of my commitments have been less exhausting than what you describe.  (basically a whole day every week plus attending meetings and volunteering in other ways)...

Just for clarity's sake what do your other boys do, consistently, that helps them see their peers?

My 14 year old has regular game nights at 1 friends house, he also has minecraft days 2-3 times a month with 1 other friend. Then he has church activities 1 night a week where all his friends usually go and there are activities that are monthly/quarterly besides that. Then he has Sunday school with them and he will also have a daily church devotional class near the highschool where his friends will go too.

My 12 year old has the church activities 1 day a week and Sunday school. He also is doing cross country this year with a couple of his good friends and that will be daily, plus meets. I do play days for him but they are not as regular as my oldest because of his sports.

My 10  year old also has church and he has 1 activity night every other week at church. He is not interested in anything that involves a group so he is the most difficult to find things for. He does do play days at least once a week.

 

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1 hour ago, seemesew said:

My 14 year old has regular game nights at 1 friends house, he also has minecraft days 2-3 times a month with 1 other friend. Then he has church activities 1 night a week where all his friends usually go and there are activities that are monthly/quarterly besides that. Then he has Sunday school with them and he will also have a daily church devotional class near the highschool where his friends will go too.

My 12 year old has the church activities 1 day a week and Sunday school. He also is doing cross country this year with a couple of his good friends and that will be daily, plus meets. I do play days for him but they are not as regular as my oldest because of his sports.

My 10  year old also has church and he has 1 activity night every other week at church. He is not interested in anything that involves a group so he is the most difficult to find things for. He does do play days at least once a week.

 

 

That all sounds awesome! I wouldn't think you'd need a co-op on top of those things for more friend time. 

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4 hours ago, seemesew said:

My 14 year old has regular game nights at 1 friends house, he also has minecraft days 2-3 times a month with 1 other friend. Then he has church activities 1 night a week where all his friends usually go and there are activities that are monthly/quarterly besides that. Then he has Sunday school with them and he will also have a daily church devotional class near the highschool where his friends will go too.

My 12 year old has the church activities 1 day a week and Sunday school. He also is doing cross country this year with a couple of his good friends and that will be daily, plus meets. I do play days for him but they are not as regular as my oldest because of his sports.

My 10  year old also has church and he has 1 activity night every other week at church. He is not interested in anything that involves a group so he is the most difficult to find things for. He does do play days at least once a week.

 

 

For the 14 yo...half is video games related and half is sunday school, if he doesn't continue wanting to go to church at 16 or so,he will be pretty much left out of the loop.  I say keep him in the co-op for just a few classes and to heck with what the other moms think.  You've paid your dues and deserve a break.  This is the age where breaking into a new peer group is EXTREMELY difficult.  I don't see why it's "drop the co-op" or "keep the whole she bag" what about just letting this oldest one take two classes. ?

If the 12 year old likes Cross Country stick with it.  Sounds good for him with the Church stuff and CC stuff.  This is a good time to teach him independence in doing laundry, schoolwork, and let him start to establish a regular routine of personal responsibility.  A slightly less hectic life will really go a long way there.

For the ten year old maybe during your time off from the co-op you can experiment a bit with other things he might like to try- karate, jui jitsu, any kind of martial art is super low parent involvement and even when they start competing it's only a few competitions per year, (like, two.) Super easy!  🙂

 

Just some more thoughts.  

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2 hours ago, Calming Tea said:

 

For the 14 yo...half is video games related and half is sunday school, if he doesn't continue wanting to go to church at 16 or so,he will be pretty much left out of the loop.  I say keep him in the co-op for just a few classes and to heck with what the other moms think.  You've paid your dues and deserve a break.  This is the age where breaking into a new peer group is EXTREMELY difficult.  I don't see why it's "drop the co-op" or "keep the whole she bag" what about just letting this oldest one take two classes. ?

If the 12 year old likes Cross Country stick with it.  Sounds good for him with the Church stuff and CC stuff.  This is a good time to teach him independence in doing laundry, schoolwork, and let him start to establish a regular routine of personal responsibility.  A slightly less hectic life will really go a long way there.

For the ten year old maybe during your time off from the co-op you can experiment a bit with other things he might like to try- karate, jui jitsu, any kind of martial art is super low parent involvement and even when they start competing it's only a few competitions per year, (like, two.) Super easy!  🙂

 

Just some more thoughts.  

I should have mentioned the game nights are not video games but board/card/night games. He really could do the group and I am still considering it because at the end of the day I have done the work in the group and I do need a break.

I appreciate all your ideas and they have been so helpful! thank you for taking the time to respond!

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No problem!!! Enjoy your summer and try to relax and put the decisions aside for a few weeks. Either way you need a break and need to give yourself permission to take one. ((Hugs))

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Well I made the plunge and told them I won't be back this year. I simply said that it didn't feel right for us and I felt strongly I needed to focus on my family, which is exactly how I'm feeling at this point. They were completely understanding! I know it somewhat leaves them in a bind but I simply could not do it. I am feeling a little anxiety at being *free* and not having anything to hold a standard to, but at the same time I'm FREE! 

Thanks for all your help and advice ❤️

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