Homeschool Blues | Teen Ink

Homeschool Blues MAG

July 9, 2008
By Catie Frankland BRONZE, Jessup, Maryland
Catie Frankland BRONZE, Jessup, Maryland
4 articles 0 photos 0 comments

I get stereotyped a lot. When I meet someone for the first time, we’ll be talking about movies, music, or summer jobs – then, the dreaded question: “So, where do you go to school?” I shift slightly. I know how they’re going to ­react. I know that they’ll give me a weird look and then find an excuse to move on, muttering a derogatory remark as they smirk at me. You see, I’m homeschooled.

This stereotype has affected me numerous times. One day, my friend and I were taking the PSAT at the local high school. The attendant found our educational choice amusing.

“Do you ever wish you could go to ­real school?” she asked.

“I do go to a real school, thank you very much.” I tried not to sound annoyed.

“You don’t get out much, do you?”

“I get out plenty.”

“Do you know what prom is?”

“Yes, I’m going to mine this spring.” I sighed thankfully as a voice boomed over the loudspeaker, signaling the start of the test.

Last summer one of my coworkers, who was in college, asked what grade I was in and what school I went to.

I ­answered. “Don’t you get tired of sitting at home all day?” she asked, blankly.

I sighed. It was too late; her view of me was already tainted. I could tell she thought I was naive and ­immature.

“So do you have any friends?” she asked.

“Of course!” My sarcastic self wanted to say something about a hermit, but I decided to stick to the facts and not let my big mouth get me in trouble.

People’s reactions are beginning to ­annoy me. I used to dread being asked where I go to school. I would do almost anything to avoid the question. I was afraid I would get stuck in the homeschooler stereotype: long hair, dresses, 16 kids in the family, never heard of Britney Spears, never been to a mall, just sit at home and knit all day. I’m not super smart, and I don’t have a learning ­disability. However, as I near the end of high school, and ­reflect on almost 10 years of being homeschooled, I realize that I shouldn’t be afraid of the stereotype; I should redefine it.

You see, I have two sisters: one is ­attending a public high school, the other goes to the local community college. I play lacrosse and basketball, and my best friend and I will be starting driver’s ed soon. One of my other close friends attends a local high school. I go the mall almost as often as I brush my teeth. I love rock music. I was shocked at Jamie Lynn’s pregnancy. I love McDonald’s double cheeseburgers and hate Starbucks coffee. I write poetry. I hate algebra. I have a MySpace. My toenails are lime-green, my hair is shoulder-length, and I want dreadlocks. I help run a coffee house for high school bands. Oh, and my best friend, who is also homeschooled, received a full Division I college scholarship for soccer.

I’m not handing out this information to prove that I am just like you; I want you to see that you are just like me. I don’t live in a different world than ­other high schoolers. I only choose to be homeschooled.

Recently a coworker asked the ­question and seemed surprised with my answer. “You’re homeschooled?” he asked, shocked. I smiled. That’s the message I want to send. I want to show them what a homeschooler is really like: any other teenage girl.

Similar Articles


This article has 169 comments.

on Oct. 7 2010 at 12:11 pm
HOPEfully SILVER, Clayton, North Carolina
6 articles 1 photo 30 comments

Favorite Quote:
My Cinderella. She is real. She exists. I pray for her constantly. May God satisfy the desires of her heart, draw her close, consume her. May He claim her passions, her identity, her refuge, her hopes, her strengths and weaknesses -Adam Young


i know what you mean.

people just don't get us.

i am homeschooled and i love justin bieber went to his concert, even. i listen to pop music, adore taylor swift and am at this very moment wearing skinny jeans.

the only thing different about me is that i don't go to school in some dark classroom where everyone talks insteads of listens. i actually enjoy my learning and i get to do it in my pajamas!

shedevil said...
on Oct. 6 2010 at 7:27 am
shedevil, Spotsylvania, Virginia
0 articles 0 photos 31 comments
Everyone has a diferent point of view, but i have personally never sterotyped anyone who has been homeschooled.

on Sep. 26 2010 at 9:03 am
Still_Waters26 SILVER, Ladysmith, Wisconsin
6 articles 0 photos 88 comments

Favorite Quote:
"We few, we happy few/we band of brothers/For he to-day that sheds his blood with me/Shall be my brother"
-Shakespeare, "Henry V"

LOVE this article, great job!! I'm homeschooled too, and I know other homeschoolers who shun themselves from the world, dress old-fashioned, and guess what? they didn't even know what Playstation was! 

Aidyl BRONZE said...
on Sep. 14 2010 at 8:08 pm
Aidyl BRONZE, Oshawa, Other
4 articles 0 photos 91 comments

Favorite Quote:
"If you want a friend be a friend."


"That's cool. Hey you know what's even cooler than triceratops? Every other dinosaur that ever existed!"
-Dwight Schrute The Office

I guess this has been your experience, but I never had any kind of stereotype in my mind about kids who are homeschooled. And I go to a public school... so yeah.

on Sep. 14 2010 at 10:14 am
SingleGal SILVER, Huntsville, Arkansas
5 articles 0 photos 38 comments

Favorite Quote:

lol i go to a public school.

on Sep. 14 2010 at 9:56 am
Totally agreed. Im homeschooled to an its like were supposed to be social lepers or somethng

on Sep. 14 2010 at 8:46 am
cutebunny_10 BRONZE, Marrero, Louisiana
4 articles 0 photos 8 comments

Favorite Quote:
Everything Happens For A Reason! :)

i love you rebecca :)

on Sep. 14 2010 at 8:45 am
Kathleen_Lee-Anne BRONZE, Luling, Louisiana
3 articles 0 photos 5 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Why live life unnoticed?"

Your life should never be something that discourages you. Remember if you are living your life the way you need to be, then it's everyone elses problem on what they are doing wrong and what you are doing right. I also really like your writting.

ApiKarimi said...
on Aug. 24 2010 at 11:25 pm
ApiKarimi, Anaheim, California
0 articles 0 photos 16 comments

Favorite Quote:
"one original thought is worth a thousand mindless quotings"-Diogenes

Loved it!

So honest and personal.

on Aug. 23 2010 at 9:45 am
the_crazy_one BRONZE, San Jose, California
3 articles 0 photos 12 comments

Favorite Quote:
Be yourself, and do what you want, because those who matter don't mind, and those who mind don't matter.

This article really spoke to me. For kindergarten through half of fifth grade, I went to a public school. For sixth grade, I went to a homeschool charter school, which is mostly like a homeschool. Homeschooling was the first time I ever really found true friends, people who would accept me for who I was, where I didn't have to try to fit in. Now, for seventh grade, I'm going to a private school, but I will never forget that year of my life when I was homeschooled. It taught me responsibility, independence, and not to be so shy.

Recently, there was a girl in my yoga class who I found out was homeschooled. I'm fine with that. I've found out that homeschoolers make better people and better friends.

Wow, I have so much stuff I want to say on this topic.  Maybe I should write an article.

on Aug. 22 2010 at 12:36 pm
AshleyNicole1995 GOLD, Queen City, Texas
11 articles 3 photos 25 comments

Favorite Quote:
Whatever is lovely...think about such things.-Philippians 4:8

I've been homeschooling for 3yrs now and I get asked questions like that all the time. It's so annoying, especially when you still have friends from public school who think they are better than you.

ezizza BRONZE said...
on Jul. 27 2010 at 1:11 pm
ezizza BRONZE, Framingham, Massachusetts
1 article 0 photos 3 comments

Favorite Quote:
You never know how STRONG you are....
untill being strong is the ONLY choice you have- unknown
look foward not back reach for the future remeber the pastdont be afraid shoot for the moon and always remember what i tought you!- my "bis sis" chess
“If you live to be 100, I hope I live to be 100 minus 1 day, so I never have to live without you.”
Winnie the Pooh

just because your home schooled doesnt mean your any diffrent then the next person. no matter what people say hold you head high and forget about them if they cant accepet you for you and they are loseres!!!!

on Jul. 23 2010 at 5:16 pm
lizzymwrites GOLD, Miami, Florida
13 articles 0 photos 56 comments

Favorite Quote:
The only people for me are the mad ones... the ones who never yawn and say a commonplace thing but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow Roman candles exploding like spiders against the stars." - Jack Kerouac

I know what you mean. Stereotypes are awful, horrible things. When people say that religious people are arrogant, or that gays are freaky or that people from other countries are uncivilized, I lose it. It's awful.

Say no to stereotypes, everyone!

on Jul. 20 2010 at 2:48 pm
The_Blackest_Rose PLATINUM, Joliet, Montana
31 articles 19 photos 41 comments

Favorite Quote:
"History is the fiction we invent to convince ourselves that events are knowable and life has order and direction." --Calvin and Hobbes

Some of my friends at school say that homeschoolers are weird, socially rejected freaks. Most time that little comment ends with me yelling at them. I'm really shy, but I can't stand it when people say that because  some of my best friends are homeschooled. If you were following the stererotype, you'd think I was the homeschooled one. I"m glad you wrote this. It needed to be written.

safidyre said...
on Jul. 15 2010 at 10:11 pm
safidyre, Blanchard, Oklahoma
0 articles 0 photos 2 comments

i homeschool and i love it ! 

i don't get stereotyped that often most people know about homeschooling and understand it 

but occasionally people freak out over if im lonely .....i have too many friends haha :) 

i enjoyed your post :)

on Jul. 11 2010 at 5:32 pm
Sara.M.G.D BRONZE, Dallas, Texas
4 articles 1 photo 20 comments

Favorite Quote:
thats interesting

Don't feel bad about home schooling I like it it's more relaxing ,so great work

sallybally. said...
on Jun. 28 2010 at 7:59 pm
i would just like to point out that all the home schoolers are saying agreeing with the discrimination, and the ones without home school experiences aren't.

cameronjay said...
on Jun. 24 2010 at 2:16 pm
first of all,i go to public school and my 2 bestfriends are homeschooled.(: oh but i just wanted to say that not all ppl who go to public school think or steriotype homschooled kids. i dont! so ur kinda doin the same thing...

on Jun. 18 2010 at 12:44 am
sofastyoucantsee SILVER, Amherst, New Hampshire
7 articles 0 photos 2 comments

Favorite Quote:
Whether you think you can or you can't, you're right

I was homeschooled from 1st-7th grade and I can't remember very many instances of being judged in any way. Homeschooling and Public Schooling are so different that it's extremely hard for me to decide which one I prefer more but homeschooling was a very positive experience for me and I didn't get hardly any descrimination from anyone. To tell you the truth I was quite taken aback by this post because my experiences in homeschooling were very very different.

on Jun. 13 2010 at 7:49 am
heaps_of_mel BRONZE, Wantirna, Other
1 article 0 photos 5 comments

Favorite Quote:
life's a banquet and most people are starving to death

when i started highschool (i live in aust. so we start highschool when we are 13) there was a boy in my class who used to be homeschooled and i made similar assumptions about him. granted i was alot younger than now but still...i shouldn't have.

That was an awesome article. It got your point acrss in an interesting way.

Smith Summer

Parkland Speaks

Campus Compare