How to get Independent children
From personal freedom grows independent persons. Children need the right to pursue their own path in life.
We often meet a question: whether our children will become independent when they live in this unique way with unschooling while traveling the world.
Yes, it is true that our children almost always sleep in the same room as us parents, and are in shouting proximity of us, and rarely do something away from the context of the family. They are not in school, don’t have their own room, don’t go away for summer camp, and can always talk to us if they want to.
To anyone used to looking at the children inside the matrix, it might look like our children will never become independent humans. The concept “Independent children” are often understood as children who can do things without their parents. Children who: sleep alone, commute alone, pursue their own interests, and go on excursions outside of the family.
So, being independent is to do things alone?
To me, this is a very simple-minded way of understanding independence.
No humans are genuinely independent. We all need other people. We all need family, friends, neighborhoods, colleges, maybe even a nation, and a global world to participate in. This is the beauty of being human.
When we grow into adulthood, it does not mean we cut off everyone else. It means our role in the community will change. Everyone else can expect something different from us.
Being an independent mature adult is all about being able to live your life without instruction, and living life is very much about participating in human communities of all sorts. To do this, you will need to know who you are and to understand all of the communities you are part of. You will need experience with your own skills and with acquiring new ones, and you will need to be able to understand the needs of yourself AND the groups of people you are part of. This is complex, and it takes years to learn.
Children who grow up in the “normal systems” will be instructed from the moment they are born until they are in their mid-twenties (i might exaggerate a bit here, but only a bit if you think about it): They will be told what to do, when to do it and how to do it (but most often not really why, funny enough) and they will be evaluated so they know if they did it right and if they did it well – but not if they did it in a unique way, wholehearted and with balance.
The glorification of the independent child is, if you think about it, just BS. The independent child is just a child who internalized all of the voices telling it what to do and how to do what everyone else wants it to do.
Free children are independent because they have experience deciding for themselves because they experience respect for their unique personality and perspective because they develop the ability to see when someone else need them and are happy to join the community and do their part – no one will tell them they are too small to make a difference, and they will first need an education.
Free children develop independence based on knowing who they are. Only this kind of independence is true independence.
Independence is being able to make your OWN choices based on OWN reflections and OWN initiative. To be able to do this takes experience plus personal freedom.
No children become independent from sleeping in a dark room when they are babies or from being well-behaved ins school, getting good grades, or not letting their parents into their world and learn what they are thinking.
From personal freedom grows independent persons.
Children need to be respected for who they are; they need their personal freedom and their right to pursue their own path in life.
If you want a gold star in parenting, the job is to respect the unique personality of your children, their special souls, their personal freedom and to trust they will develop beautifully if they are trusted with the freedom and the peace to do so.
Plus, of course – shower them with unconditional love.
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