Not every family should homeschool. Not every family should go to public school. We can still respect each other. There is no need to look down on homeschoolers, but there is also no need for us to look down on families that choose public schools.
I'm always a little irritated by parents and friends that are so rigid in their thinking that they think I'm blowing it by homeschooling. They usually give their two cents worth -- "What about socializing?" Often I am told that the public school district is blue ribbon rated, or something to that effect. I've been told by church members that our kids need to be in the world at school.
I don't like to be told I'm doing it wrong. So, I realize that they don't want to be told they are doing it wrong. And who am I to know what is needed in their home?
I have decided not to argue about any of this. I side step it and say, "yea, I'm a rebel mom, I homeschool." In my old ward where we had been members for 30 years my kids were known to be good examples at church and knowledgeable about the gospel. No one hassled me too much. But I did feel like the loner.
I have made the decision not to tangle. I don't like contention. My husband would like to shout it from the rooftops -- we all should homeschool our children. I tell him not to say much. It's good for our children, but not everyone can do it, nor would I want to be in a co-op group with everyone. In a way, I like that the majority of kids are in public school. (And yes, I wish it was better, private, moral and etc, etc.)
Come on -- would you want every family to be homeschooling? I feel privileged to be able to homeschool. We have made monetary sacrifices, true. But the day I decided to homeschool my third child for the middle school years, I told him this was a privilege -- "you get to be homeschooled." It's like the days of private tutors, one on one teaching. Most of my kid's friends envied our homeschool life. At first, during the high school years, these friends would try to talk my kids into going to traditional school. And my kids would think they might be missing something. One even went for a year, but begged to come back to homeschool. He has a college degree today from a prestigious college.
I understand that not every mom can do this, nor every child. There are single moms, there are homes that need two incomes. When someone questions my decision to homeschool, I just brush it off, "it works for me and our family, but it isn't for everyone." This lets my friends feel good about their decisions too. After all, this is the best part of freedom and agency -- getting to choose and it's ok if our friends choose public school and we choose homeschool. We can still respect each other, because we're all in different situations. My kids go to seminary with kids that go to public school. My sons participated in track at the public high school. They have friends that were in "school." We can be friends.