Fear makes you question your instinct (and they know it)
April 12, 2023 | Sharon Sedlar
Fear is a powerful tool. It can be used in a very calculated and manipulating way. It makes you doubt yourself, your decisions, your instincts, and even your sanity. Fear combined with authority is extremely powerful. And they know it.
A friend once told me “Always trust your gut. No one knows that child better than you.” Since (at the time) I wasn’t even a parent, I doubted her. How could I consider my “gut” over the books, the experienced family members, and the “experts”? Yet she was 100% right.
That’s not to say that my “gut” is right 100% of the time (to which my family will gladly attest), but when it comes to my parenting journey, I can now realize that my most concerning parenting trials stemmed from not listening to my intuition, my “inner mom voice”, my “gut”.
For example, when I was told that the district environment wasn’t responsible for my child’s debilitating anxiety, so I sought blame within my own family household; or when I was told that she was “fine” and “happy” day after day, while she in reality was putting on a mask as the people pleaser she was, while completely crumbling inside; or when I was told that the Student Accommodation Plan rather than a 504 was all that was needed; or when I was told that I and my doctor weren’t thinking in my child’s best interests, and I had to be more strict with her rather than consoling. Listening to others, and not my “gut”, forced my child to remain in a damaging district environment for months longer than she should have.
Once my children were in an alternative education method, they all blossomed. There was no more drama such as was evident in the district environment. They slowly ceased feeling ostracized by others who couldn’t understand the commitment to our religious and family values. The chaos and noise of the outside world was quieted, and we were able to re-center our family.
Academically-speaking, exposure to Advanced Placement courses, expanded curriculum, and elective classes greatly increased. Their educational path was no longer dictated to them by the school and what the school was willing to offer; but rather they were able to create their own path, and gain exposure to subjects and interests in which they hadn’t before even considered. It changed their world, their perspective, and their overall well being.
Because of our experience, we are firmly committed to supporting other parents in a purposely constructed, welcoming and motivational community dedicated to both child and family; what they need, individually and collectively, to thrive. We seek to help all families gain, maintain, and/or expand options for their children within the education system – rather than be forced to endure damaging environment or services simply for the sake of others within antiquated systems.
We hope to support parents in following their “gut”, and pursuing what they know is best for each of their unbelievably special and unique children, working through those fears, and harnessing their massive, loving and enduring power to do what’s right for their families. Don’t let fear quiet your instinct – your “gut” is the most honest voice you have.