I think alot of times what is perceived as arrogance can often times just be plain defensiveness.
When you feel like you constantly have to justify your decision to homeschool, especially unschool, defending what you think is “right for your family” can come across as though it’s what you think is “right” in general.
Not necessarily so, maybe we’re just tired of having to explain ourselves to every person (educated on the matter or not) who has a beef with homeschooling.
It’s unfortunate that this arrogant perception exists at all because frankly, I’ve found homeschooling/unschooling parents to be some of the most open minded and tolerant people around.
So, maybe there are times when I’ve come across as arrogant…but it’s not because I think my way is better than anyone else’s. It’s just that I DO KNOW it’s the best choice FOR US.
My dh and I are confident that what we are doing is right, but our in-laws view that as arrogance and superiority. It doesn’t help that when they start to pontificate I tend to laugh. I don’t mean to- I laugh when I am angry or stressed. You should see me at funerals- it ain’t pretty.
I have always said that if you aren’t enthusiastic and dedicated to what you say you believe, then you don’t *really* believe, do you? 😉
Sheri – I’ve been thinking a lot more about this and I think part of what people see as arrogance is the inability of the other party to see their side, and appreciate that there might be more than one way to look at something. I think really that’s why one person will see someone’s ideas as arrogant, while another person won’t. What do you think?
Sunniemom – It’s interesting – I wonder if your in-laws would think that people who they *agree* with, who are also confident and sure they are doing things right, are arrogant. The more I think about it, the more I realize that the people who I consider to be arrogant are people who have said to me, “Your opinion isn’t worth my time or consideration.” That’s arrogance. What if we give other people’s opinion our time and consideration? I’m going to test this out with people who don’t agree with me.. see what happens. 🙂
I like to exercise civility (especially since it doesn’t come to me naturally) when conversing with someone of a differing viewpoint- and the more we differ, the more polite I attempt to be.
With family, I think folks tend to take disagreement personally, as if by saying “I don’t agree” you are also by proxy saying “I don’t like you” or “I think you are an idiot”.
As far as my inlaws go, they take everything personally- I stood in their living room a year ago and received a 45 minute lecture on why I am a horrible mother for not teaching my kids that Santa Claus is real. My mil was acting like she was devastated “I didn’t raise my son like that!” This also implying that I have somehow brainwashed my dh. Which means my dh is…. a wet spaghetti noodle?
I agree that arrogance is an “I have arrived” attitude, and of course, none of us have. BUT- when someone attempts to engage me in a debate solely for the purpose of debate, and *not* to reach some level of understanding, I will shut the conversation down.