#49 - Q&A Episode with Just Josie | Journey into Unschooling and the Heart of Parenting

E49 - JUST JOSIE (1)

🗓️ Recorded December 17th, 2023. 📍Los Barilles, Baja California Sur, Mexico

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About this Episode 

We got an email with great questions from a listener. Instead of a long email answer, we invited Josie to interview us for an episode. Josie doesn't use her last name, so we lovingly call her Just Josie :)

Josie is navigating the tides of raising young children while embracing the principles of unschooling. Josie's tale of transition from the simplicity of van life to the rich complexities of family life in California unfolds, offering listeners a glimpse into the world of alternative education and parenting. We share our story on how we see the impact of unschooling on early child development, the value of being attuned to our kids' natural learning rhythms, and how this approach can redefine traditional schooling paradigms.

Parenting is far from a one-size-fits-all endeavor, and this episode delves into the nuances of creating a supportive learning environment that balances guidance with freedom. We tackle the weighty matter of parental insecurities head-on, disarming the societal pressures that come with developmental milestones. From mitigating sibling jealousy to the profound impact of teachable moments, we share strategies that fortify family bonds and empower children to navigate their own educational paths. This episode is a gentle reminder of the beauty and challenges inherent in fostering a child's independence from the earliest stages.

As we unravel the complexities of sibling dynamics and the role of government in education, our conversation takes a turn towards advocating for minimal state intervention. The essence of unschooling comes alive as we envision a future where learning is self-directed, and the spirit of inquiry remains untethered by compulsory schooling. We call on parents to reclaim their authority, trust their instincts, and courageously support their children's unique journeys. 

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4 WAYS YOU CAN SUPPORT OUR PODCAST!

With love

Jesper-Underskrift

Jesper Conrad 

AUTOGENERATED TRANSCRIPT

00:00 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Welcome to Self-Directed. We are your hosts, cecilia and Jesper Conrad, and now it's time to welcome this week's guest. So, josie, let's start with. We received an email from you where it was like ah, I wanted to figure out how to put a comment on one of your podcasts. I couldn't figure it out, so now I'm trying here instead. And then we got to ride a little back and forth and I was like, oh, maybe we should just invite Josie to ask all of her questions and stuff like that on this podcast interview. So here we are and welcome, and let's figure out how we can fill this hour with fun.

00:45 - Josie (Guest)
Well, thanks for having me. I've never been on a podcast before, so Very exciting yeah yeah. And I like your podcast a lot because you talk about very important stuff like there's not a whole lot of people making content like yours, and so being able to share what you have with the world essentially is that's really cool.

01:04 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Thank you. Yeah, it's the reason we're doing it. It could feel like some sort of waste of time right now Our kids are at the beach and we were sitting here in a not exactly dark room but it does make sense to just get these ideas out there. We remember when we were starting out on this kind of self-directed lifestyle. It's just feel like you're breaking off from so many systems and it can be a really scary and lonely walk and there was not much to find. Podcast was a quite new thing at the time and, yeah, there was not much information except for the classic books and you would have to sit down and start. But what you need really is some real people, Someone to talk to, someone, listen to, meet someone. That's been our key, like the bridge that we've been walking. That's the people. So that's the reason we do the podcast and now we're sort of guests in our own podcasts.

02:05 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Which are like which is fun. Then we get to talk.

02:09 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
That's fun. So the situation is you have a younger child, I do, yeah.

02:16 - Josie (Guest)
He'll be two in the spring, so, and then we'll have, at that time, another baby as well.

02:23 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Congratulations, yes.

02:26 - Josie (Guest)
Yeah, it's gonna be a lot.

02:28 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Yeah, we're up in the mountains. I remember getting the second one was really a that felt like hard work. Yeah, because the first one will completely change your life. Everything changes, it's just a game changer. And the second one, for me, the biggest thing, was the split that you have to be there 100% for two people and sometimes you actually have to choose, which can be really, really hard. That's a hammer into the forehead. Sometimes, if one is crying and another falls over and opens the knee in a big wound, you have to put the baby down and attend to the wound and that can be. That was the big thing with the second one, and our second one was a very hard baby. So for me also it just felt like work. Man, I didn't sleep for a year but that was because of that specific child. That's not a standard, but I think the splitting of the mom role, that's the standard. That's difficult.

03:37
You have to get used to it, yeah.

03:40 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
The big change was child number three, because then you are outnumbered and you begin to feel that you are not any longer the center of the universe. It is your children and you differ. The first one, yeah, but I'm a little slow, I'm a mad mom.

04:01 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
It's okay.

04:03 - Josie (Guest)
Yeah, I can only imagine, and I mean, if I had maybe thought a little bit longer about it, I might have spaced them out a little bit more than two years, but things happen the way they're supposed to happen and I'm just really excited for him to have a friend.

04:16 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Yeah, I think their advantage is to any distance between children that you can't make up any rules for it. And also it's two different people Right? Not like you can predict how the whole trajectory will be and how the combination of there will be one more person and that's a person with a personality and you never know who it's going to be. So planning is with kids. I think it's a waste of time.

04:43 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
You get the kids, you get but, josie, with a soon to be two year old and a baby on the way, how did you discover unschooling and homeschooling and thought that was something for you, because they are not in the school age at all?

05:02 - Josie (Guest)
It's funny that you asked, because I never thought I was going to have children. It's not something that I hadn't really thought a whole lot about or planned into my life or anything. I actually I live in California now. I moved here three years ago almost now. I lived in my van with my dogs and my cat and I moved here and I was treating jujitsu like every day and that was kind of. We lived at the beach and that was what I was really enjoying at that stage of my life and it was a little bit of an unexpected gift to find out that I was pregnant. But I've actually I've also seen that you interviewed Lucy. Is that her name? Lucy from Lulest, a hippie shake.

05:46 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

05:48 - Josie (Guest)
so I actually used to watch her many years ago when I was just looking into kind of more non-traditional and off-grid living and stuff just for myself and I really kind of fell in love with her story and her family and just watching the way that she was raising her girls and stuff. That really spoke to me and so I actually got into the whole idea of on-schooling, kind of by accident, without ever thinking I was going to have any children. So I guess I would count myself as pretty fortunate because I feel that I have the opportunity to make kind of an informed decision before I get there. Versus I know a lot of people. I totally get it, but I feel like a lot of people look back and say, oh, I wish I had known this before. And I'm sure that there are other things I'm going to look back and say that about.

06:32
But just having from the outset, even just with the whole birth process and having the life change of a child, having that idea in mind of that, you know, this is all a learning experience and everything is more geared towards trusting my children and trusting their natural instincts and things like that. That also sometimes helps to make Well for me, I guess. I think it maybe makes mothering a little bit easier, because I think a lot of times something that can be really difficult is to have your instincts say one thing and have society say something else and to say why do? Everyone's telling me this is the right thing, but it feels wrong and I don't know what to do. So having more trust in yourself and in your child, I feel like, is a really empowering way to start off a parenting journey. So I guess I'm really blessing that.

07:19 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
But it's not too early to think on schooling. It's just more rare because it happens more frequently once you get to that point where it's not just the expectations of everyone around you. I mean, now we're at a point where you have to leave your child to strangers all day. This child has to obey those strangers by doing things that they would not do Sit down and listen for five hours. That's just not what they do when they're six years old. In some countries it's even when they are three. In France it's school at three or four. That's when the reality hits.

08:04
A lot of parents like, okay, this is crazy. You can handle kindergarten. You can handle the expectations that maybe three-year-old say politely thank you or whatever, go to bed at a specific time or these things that they're against what would maybe be your flow, but you can sort of get through. And then when the schooling comes, it's like okay, shh fuck, come on now. And a lot of the strategies from unschooling totally, I mean, should be applied from the beginning, and I'm one of those who would say I wish I'd known before. We've been learning to unschool while unschooling and I'm still learning to unschool while unschooling. It feels like running alongside a train. I just have to pick up everything while doing everything and working on myself and, at the same time, travel the world and at the same time, not being 25 anymore, I have to, you know, just make sure I get my sleep and my water and whatever to have the energy. So you just have a head start. It's great.

09:15 - Josie (Guest)
I mean. That's why I like to say that I am blessed about it and I know that, even though I'm not quite at the schooling age yet, it is really fun for me to watch, just because life is learning. It doesn't start at three or four or five or anything. I mean he's learning right now and he's doing that through play, and so it's exciting for me to kind of just understand that process a little bit more intimately, I think, and to watch the way that he's learning and the things that he loves.

09:42
And even now, like since he's been, you know, nine or 10 months old, he's been very, very into cars, especially classic cars and motorcycles and stuff like that.

09:51
So you know, we can pick up on things like that and do things like go to the car show that's in town when it comes, and he loves to watch fire trucks and things like that, and so then we might go and learn about fire trucks, and not in any, you know, curricula based way, but just you know, we might go to the fire station and say like, hey, this is what happens here and you know he really, really loves it, and so just being able to pick up on those interests that they have to be able to give them resources to further that interest and, being a stay at home mom, I'm also very blessed with the amount of time to be able to dedicate to that. I know a lot of people struggle, especially in the beginning, with their unschooling and parenting journey, because you know the stresses of work and, like the other and you know, with the other parent gone all the time.

10:37
So I definitely feel like, even though I wasn't ready and I don't think I ever would have been ready and it was a really rough transition I feel like I am in a pretty blessed spot to be starting out with, and so I'm really grateful for that.

10:54 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Yeah, it's a good thing. I'm thinking some of the things we often say to older, to people with older kids who start unschooling as look back at when they were small, you didn't teach them to walk, you didn't teach them to speak. These things happened, and speaking and walking are big accomplishments. It's not like little thing, it's huge. It's the fact that they can do both within Within a year ish, or maybe two. It's amazing.

11:30 - Josie (Guest)
So maybe we should think about having like a walking curriculum like oh, move your left leg first and then your right leg, and like it would just be when you try to break it down, like that it sounds.

11:40 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
It will come, Do not worry Right right.

11:44 - Josie (Guest)
They have their own natural intended drive to learn and to experience, and I don't know if you're at all familiar with the works of Joseph Chilton Pierce. He wrote Magical Child and some other. He delved very deep into like spiritual topics, but also children and birth and a lot of the things around that as well.

12:04
And his whole idea was that intent precedes ability, and so children have innate intent within them, like pre-programmed, basically, to learn all these things, to have interest and to do all this and so being able to as a parent or as an unschooler, have you want to look at it being able to just facilitate the bridge between the intent and the ability by providing whether it's appropriate modeling or just other external resources, depending on you know the age and appropriateness for the child, looking at it more as a bridge rather than, like I'm in charge of telling you what to do and like making sure that you can do it right, just kind of bridging the gap between what they want to do and what they are going to be able to do in the future.

12:53 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
It reminds me of a Russian concept of good parenting. Can't remember maybe it was Sigotsky, or can't remember which one who's who worked with the concept of zone of nearest development.

13:09
I was translating because I was studying in Danish, so I'm not sure that the concept is exactly that in English and I don't read Russian, so, but that's a really great concept where he said parents are supposed to expect from their children to be able to do things that they can't actually do. Right, and you think they can do it and you maybe even brag about them doing it, and because the parents expect that they open that space for that development. It's an interesting perspective on good parenting, but I think we have to and maybe not, maybe you're not there, but there are listeners, hopefully To make sure that it's just we. Always, when we talk about unschooling, we have the risk of falling into the trap of actually talking about having an agenda as parents Talk about.

14:10
Learning happens all the time, and it's not about learning when you go. Look at the fire trucks. It's about enjoying life. It's about having a good day. It's about going for that walk, filling up your hours with something that makes you happy. And what was that concept?

14:30
We talked about someone. If it tickles your brain, you know you want to do it. The challenge is that you can't stop yourself. Like one of our kids, he can't stop himself doing the Rubik's Cube If it's lying there and it's not perfect, it takes him 45 seconds or hops. If it tickles your brain, you go do it, you don't go. I mean, you don't throw a ball to your child in order to enhance the hand-eye coordination, right? No, it's not so.

15:07
I just want to make yes, we are talking about self-directed and we're talking about underschooling. Yes, it happens all the time. Yes, we go pick up on their interests, but that's not because we want them to learn. It's not like I have this hidden agenda that I want my child to learn hand-eye coordination. Therefore, I buy a ball and go to the beach. That would be ridiculous. That's not what I'm doing.

15:39
And now we travel the world with three of our children. I don't do that in order for them to pick up languages. No, they will pick up languages, but we travel the world because it's fun. And this agenda on the parental side, I think that's where we have to go deep inside, because what you said in the beginning about how society expects so much of you and expects specific things, you, as a parent, you have the responsibility that your children turn out in a specific way, and if you don't do that, because you don't do the schooling, you don't do the bedtime, you don't rule over eating hours, you don't tell them what to do, then you have to sort of keep explaining oh, but they will learn those things that you want me to teach them. And, yes, they will learn those things that you want me to teach them most. Maybe they won't actually, but if they need them.

16:43 - Josie (Guest)
They'll learn them.

16:44 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Actually they do. I haven't met many unschooled children who will not give me a handshake, look me in the eye and say hi when I arrive. I haven't met unschooled children who don't read. Well, yes, when they're young, obviously, but I haven't. It does, there's the rule to it, but really they will learn those things. It's just that we don't live our lives in order to make sure they learn those things. It's not the point. It's not the point.

17:18 - Josie (Guest)
You know that actually brings me to one of the questions that I had come up with, because even though I have been kind of looking into this whole philosophy of unschooling for a long time and I really do deeply resonate with it and I try to apply a lot of the principles, I do sometimes still find myself doing those classic teaching moments, even just something as simple as saying a word really slowly, kind of multiple times or something, just to try and get them to say it back, or something like that. And so I wonder if you have any advice on how to kind of retrain your brain on having those parental teaching moments.

17:52 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
I wouldn't be afraid of it. Item one, and then I would go back to the Russian about the zone of nearest development. If you are in sync with your child, you can see and hear and feel where they want to move, and I'm pretty sure your child would love to be able to use more words, so that you are telling more words and giving him the vocalization of the word. I absolutely see no wrong in that, and that is where some unschooling falls into the in my world on parenting. Oh, you are not allowed to do anything. I don't agree with that. I agree with that.

18:42 - Josie (Guest)
That's actually one of my other questions. I was going to ask you about your opinion of radical parenting. But I think that spectrum that gets kind of.

18:48 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Oh, it is.

18:49 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Let's do this one first. I think that the teachable moments that you know, you pick up the I have a point no, no, no, no, no, no.

19:00 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
It's a point following up on one we talked about earlier and which is about teachable moments, maybe School insecurity. I, as a parent, feel way better when I can say to my mom or some strangers we meet oh, my child, he learned to read in both Spanish and English and Danish more or less at the same time, because the choices I have made in my life, that we have made are so radically different to the, to the norm, not what is normal I find what we are doing very normal but to the norm of sending your child to school that you, that I feel I need to, I need to stand guard for, yeah, but it's actually okay. Where the funny other version? We actually just did a podcast into you with a guy called Blake Bowls where he is turning it around and is asking so why are you still sending your children to school? It's a book.

20:07
And so to put the responsibility of explaining yourself on those that actually put their children to school and not the ones that are not putting their children to school. But I have this even 10 years down the road. I have this parental insecurity sometimes where I'm afraid of feeling judged on what we are delivering for our children. But that's, my children are fine. They are happy with who they are and what they are and how they live their life. It's about me, and maybe this can be dragged back into the whole performance lifestyle I have lived with, where I went to school and you need to stand in front of the class and read out loud and you are judged on your merits all the time and not on who you are as a person if you're kind, wonderful human being or one. So I cannot, yeah.

21:05 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Can I say something?

21:06 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, absolutely.

21:07 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
So I think we changed the subject, and in a minute I want to go back to the teaching moment.

21:13 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
But I just wanted to talk about me.

21:15 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
I know we talked about you now. Now we will go on and talk about watching all things. That's all right, I'm just joking, it's fine.

21:28
No, but I think one thing that we really learned Maybe one of us more than the other no, sorry, it is who needs this. And I think it's important that we understand and we go inside as the parents to see if I want my children let's say I want my children to be able to do the handshake, look in the eye, say hi when we arrive to a new social situation. I want them to be able. I don't, for the record, I don't want that, but let's say I wanted that. But it would be fair enough if I needed it. Let's say I wanted that. Let's take something I do want we arrive in a new social setting. I want my children to wear clothes that are preferably without holes in them and that are clean.

22:20
Don't catch up on the t-shirt Just the moment of arrival. I'm not being very, I just have and I know that's my need. I need that. I cannot handle arriving in a new social setting or, let's say, at a museum, anything public, and we look like, you know, we just ate it over for a week. I can't have that and maybe my kids don't care, but I care and I think it's very important that I know that this is my need. I need this and I will tell my children to change that t-shirt and they will change it, and we're not leaving before they changed it. Unless they can come up with a really good argument, I will make them change that t-shirt. But I think what happens here is I can also tell them I need that. It's not everyone has to wear a clean t-shirt forever, always. That's the right thing to do and you're a bad person if you don't do it. I don't go there. I just say I need that.

23:22
One of our kids is very specific. He's not really a kid anymore. You know, our oldest son is 17. And he is very specific with. I don't like being late. If we have an appointment at three o'clock, I want to be there at three o'clock. It really stresses me out and I don't like it when we're late. Can we please make sure that we are on time?

23:46 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
And we try.

23:47 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
He needs that and some of us are like, okay, if we arrive 15 minutes after that, we fine, but we respect his needs. He's in the family, he needs that and he can express it and we all try to, you know, make sure that happens. And it's sort of the same thing with, let's say, math. It's one of the key things I could tell my children. I need you to at least learn you know the basics. I need that because I don't feel safe as an unschooling mom. If you don't go through that minimum curriculum that I will now put in front of you, you can do it whatever way you want, but I can't handle it. I get anxiety attacks. I get attacked from the state, from my mother-in-law. I don't.

24:36
He's nice, but no, it could. No, but really. But then let's say, from my own sister or my mom, I get, you know, I get attacked on my person, I get attacked on my security as a member of society. If you don't do this, so please do it. It's not because you have to as a person, but you have to in the context that you're actually living in. If you can sort out those things this is something to hear I can give you freedom. And after this point, I can't. I can't handle it. You only have one mom and that's me, and this is the point and I'm working on that point. But now we are here, you have to change that t-shirt before we go into the car.

25:18
That is really a key thing, and I think that's a problem that many parents don't even start to work with. They have this standard idea about how children are supposed to behave and what they're supposed to do and achieve, and what points In some societies you're even down to. If you ask your local pediatrician I think is the English word or whatever expert on children, they can even come up with a list of parents. They're supposed to use a pair of scissors when they are three years and two months, and if they can't do that, you're in the bad. They're supposed to be able to catch a ball when they are four years and two seconds. It's, it's insane.

26:07 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
It is, and I have a point about it being that I have met unschooling parents where it almost becomes unschooling-ism, where it is not a religion, but like something you do and you need to do it like this.

26:26
And if you don't do it like this then you're not a real unschooling and what I see is again some sort of parental insecurity. It is super weird to get a child it's really big and you, you, you should doubt if you're doing it good enough because it is wild. But some parents it's so much easier to take another curriculum, not the schools but then you read all the correct books on unschooling and you're saying, oh, I will do it exactly this way. And what then happens is that you have some other crutches than the school and system and the curriculums. But your children can feel if you're not true to yourself and I see that as a problem sometimes that people like go all the way inside, outside themselves and they're like I should be okay with this, because that's what it says in the unschooling Bibles, I should be okay with it, and your children can feel you're not honest. So why sacrifice the connection with your child because you read a book?

27:34 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Yeah, I think that brings us back actually to the other theme of the teachable moments. And should you repeat the word five times and when they get older and they ask a simple question and 10 minutes later you're just talking about the civil war and human rights and you're just babbling on? I think it really has to do with your agenda and the relation you have with your kid, because it's one of the human traits that we pass on information to our children and we teach them how to manage living in this world, in the society that they grew up in, how to understand the context, how to manage the social field, how to handle basic physical needs, how to make money. All these things have always been passed on from parents to children, from grandparents to grandchildren Information spreading.

28:39
Where there's a reason it's called the mother tongue, it's because you are supposed to teach them how to speak. And if you don't do that triple rehearsal of the right way to pronounce it, who's gonna do it? How will they learn? They don't learn spontaneously. Learn to speak because they're talking to someone.

29:00 - Josie (Guest)
Yeah, I guess the idea that I was kind of and you're right that this does come from someone who just kind of gave me an idea of this as a good way and this is not a good way, so to speak to that, I think there's a lot to do with parental insecurity, especially when you're first going into something. It's great to talk to people who have experience like you, but when you're first going into it and you do have, like you said, your mother-in-law in society and trying to tell you that, oh yeah.

29:29 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
But I think the problem is, if someone's telling you this is a good way to do it and this is a bad way to do it like, let's say, the language thing it's not about how you do it really, it's about your intention behind it. You know, are you stressed out about your child speaking? Perfectly, speaking is a bad example because all kids learn to speak and they learn that before school age. So if we're talking unschooling, it's not. If it was reading, it would be different, because reading is something that usually is taught in schools and usually parents teach their kids to read with the agenda, you know, read early or whatever this achievement thing. But really there's nothing wrong with teaching your child to read nothing at all. It has to do.

30:20
The only problem is if it's your agenda and you're stressing out about they have to read at a specific moment in life and they have to read specific books and they have to do it in a perfect way and a perfect pace at a perfect time. It's not about how you teach them to read. You can do it by. You know, buy a blackboard and put it up in your kitchen and do the ABC whatever conservative way you want to do it. Sit down at eight o'clock every morning, rehearse for half an hour, if that's the way you do it. But you do it with the, you know, because your child is asking for it, because that's what makes everyone happy, because that's the way to do it in your family.

31:04
Maybe some kids are just so damn structured they like that, you know, like our son who just likes to be punctual. It's not about how you do it, it's about your intention. Are you willing to let it go the day the child says I don't know, I don't know, I don't know, I don't know. Or would you? You know? Now we bought the blackboard and the books and it's eight o'clock and we have to sit here. So because what will everyone say if you're not reading in six months? It's all about the agenda and intention behind it. It's not about how you double pronounce or are you teaching alphabet first, or it's not about that really.

31:44 - Josie (Guest)
They have. That really resonates with me as well, and I think it was Joseph Sheldon Pierce who talked about state specific learning that when you're in any environment, you can even be like a school environment and you're because you're always learning and so what he was saying is that what you're actually taking in the most of is the state that you're in and the state that other people around you are in, and so if you're in an environment where you feel, you know, pressured to perform to these academic standards and all that stuff.

32:13
That's what you're gonna remember. You're gonna remember feeling tense and feeling anxious about whatever the subject is that you were trying to learn, versus, if you know, if it's Key, and I, you know, at the kitchen table with a book about trucks and we're going over it and like if I can keep free of that agenda and help him to feel just comfortable and safe to kind of explore at his own pace. That's what he's gonna remember that he felt comfortable when we were learning about trucks together or something. You know what I mean.

32:41 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Mm-hmm, but also, really, you're probably, you know, going to learn to multiply in that hostile environment of the school and the pressure you will be able to multiply after it. But the problem is that the emotions and the way you carry yourself, that has such a deep impact that's really hard to work with later on in life. And this is the main job, I think, of growing children to find out how to navigate everything. You pick up with your empathy, with your feelings, with your body being present in the room, with your way to move through social situations. How do we hold each other? Do we have each other's backs or are we competing? Competition can be fine if it's structured. So this is the most important job and the one that will have the most important impact on your life. That's actually how it felt to be a child, not saying that they shouldn't learn anything, and it's hard to stop them anyway. So, but I'm just saying that yeah, I think the de-schooling of ourselves is also a really important-.

34:13 - Josie (Guest)
It is, and that's the lifelong learning journey for me now it is.

34:17
And there's actually I have a great example of this actually my husband.

34:21
He, I mean, we both went to school in a traditional setting and he learned to read the traditional school way of like you need to be at this level at this time and like let's read out loud in front of the class and if you don't do it it's embarrassing and everyone laughs at you. So he had this really just difficult relationship with reading where he wasn't really allowed to fall in love with it the way that I was. My mom always ran around me and we had lots of books and so she kind of taught me a love of reading because she loved reading, whereas he got a very different introduction to reading. And it's actually very heartwarming now to see, because I provide a lot of books for my son and he loves to pick them out and they sit in our lap and read with us. And now that we're getting into some of the like Dr Seuss books and stuff, my husband is like oh, I get the cadence of this and it's fun to read this, and like I really enjoyed it so.

35:12
I feel like he's kind of rediscovering a love of learning that had been kind of stolen from him in the beginning.

35:16 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
So yeah, I have a point I was thinking about earlier, which is, I remember, when we started going down the whole on-schooling homeschooling road, I felt a big need to either fight the oppressor or argue with everybody about why schools are bad and why on-schooling is the best, and it was a way to give myself some pillars of strength of belief that this was right. Today, my advice to everybody would be don't take the fight. Don't talk with them about on-schooling if they don't they're really curious. If you have a mother-in-law that are curious about they learn something. Speak. If you can ease with her where you say, oh, they have learned this and this. If that makes her chill and happy, make her chill and happy and then just live your life and relax. I know I have wasted some hours here and there by trying to explain to people why this was the best, but that was what I needed to kind of strengthen myself. Today I would just live my life.

36:30 - Josie (Guest)
Yeah.

36:31 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah. So, josie, we talk a lot and you had some questions, so are there any more direction we should go in?

36:40 - Josie (Guest)
Well, we actually we covered a lot of the stuff that I wanted to get into about, you know, like un-parenting and teaching moments and advice to someone just starting a parental journey like I am.

36:50
So I feel like we've touched on a lot of that. I did have a question about if you have any specific recommendations and this isn't necessarily about on-schooling but so much as like in the on-schooling environment do you have any recommendations for kind of facilitating that sibling bond? I had it pointed out to me recently that and it seems obvious now that I say it out loud but a sibling relationship and I don't have any biological siblings, I have an adopted brother, but it's I wonder how. Well, what was pointed out to me was that your sibling relationship is the one that lasts with you for the longest in your life. It'll outlive your spousal relationship, your parental relationship, anything like that, and it just kind of really struck me in that moment like how important it is to me to facilitate that bond and make sure that I'm not like getting in the way of that or overdoing it or anything like that. So I wonder if you guys have any advice on that topic.

37:53 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
In many different roads. One of them is an article of Cecilia wrote like more than 10 years ago, called Siblings Without Jealousy.

38:04 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
So if I'm to paraphrase the thing I wrote, it's more like it's usually not always, but usually there is at least one route in sibling jealousy which is about feeling that the other sibling is getting more attention or more love or something is being preferred in some way. It doesn't have to be true. It's a feeling inside the child. It might be the if you have a preferred child, it might even be the preferred child who has this feeling in and might be the child who gets the most attention who still feels that they are not. So I'm not saying that parent is not giving right or doing something wrong. I'm just saying this is probably what is one of the main routes and some beauty of it is there's no way around it, you just have to handle. We started there, talking about how you have to divide yourself Maybe that was before the recording how you have to divide yourself when you have more than one child. You have to divide your attention to more than one person and there's no way you're going to do that perfectly. It will be weird, it will have faces, things will happen. The kids will feel maybe that they're not getting enough or they're getting cheated, or they will feel that and I think the main point of the thing I wrote 10 years ago is that you have to acknowledge that feeling is real. The facts behind it might not be real, but the feeling is real. This is what the child feels and that's why he's hitting his little brother. So work from there without the anger, without the pointy finger, and I think that's what I wrote. I don't think that would be my first thing to talk about. When you ask about how to support and facilitate sibling bonds, I think my first thing actually taps in also the de-schooling we also just touched upon briefly is I think a lot of unschooling parents get too ambitious about how they are supposed to do things and very afraid of doing it wrong.

40:40
For me, the most important thing is that we do live our lives, also the parents. You're not working 24 seven when you're a mother. You're living your life and somehow you have some children. You have to take care of them. It's not like it's your job, you have to man up for it like all the time it's life. It's life is that you have children, just like life is that you have feet. Almost it's just a natural part of it. You have to live with it. You have to cut those toenails. I mean, there's no way around it. And in the same way, you have some children. You have to take care of them. It's your job.

41:17
That's a very important opinion of mine. It's your job. But I don't think you should feel that you're working all the time and that you're always in the risk of doing it wrong and you always have to do it perfect. Go to the beach, have some fun and make some mistakes. Go, make a lot of mistakes. You'll make mistakes and your teenagers will blame you for it, no matter what you do. That's how it is. That's real. And I mean facilitating sibling bonds. It's a good starting point to not send them to institutions, that they grow up together.

41:58 - Josie (Guest)
That you're one for the unit.

42:02 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
And talk to your kids about it. That's my. I mean. They are actual human beings. They can express themselves, they can say what they feel they can for example, our boys.

42:16 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
They enjoy playing some games together and from time to time they we're like, oh, there's something wrong here, what is it? And then they don't feel seen by each other and then we talk. So I think that's one of the biggest jobs for a parent is all the talking, all the listening, and then you talk some more and you listen some more, and you talk some more and you listen some more and you have the luxury of time together with your children and I think that's that's the biggest gift and it's also what helps. The sibling bond is that you can help facilitate the dialogue when something is skewed and not okay between them, because you are actually around and can see it and you feel it if they are not in sync with each other, and then it's just talking, talking, talking.

43:08 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
That is really a sense of point that we might as well pick up here on schooling is talking On schooling is about conversations On schooling is so much communication it's very, very hard to even start to describe it. I cannot imagine how I would find time to go to work. There is just so much talking and it needs to be done, and it's not like we sit down in like a meditation post and have a group meeting three times a day. It's not like that. But it's just like conversations happen.

43:50
And if I feel there's something weird in a relation between we have a lot of sibling relations because we have four children, obviously If something is weird is going on, then first I stand back and see well, they figure it out themselves because it's their relation, and if it doesn't really work, I will ask them. I feel something here. Is there something we need to talk about? Can I help you, could we talk about it? And maybe they say no, and that's a bummer, because you have to respect that Sometimes what we need to do is to go for a walk with one child and ask what's happening, how you feel what's actually happening for you, and it might be a long walk, it might be several hours and then you go for a walk with the other child and you ask what's up for you?

44:43
I feel there's something off with your brother or sister, and how is it unfolding? And then you come back and then you go for a walk with first child again, try to paraphrase the other child, and this takes forever, forever Really, and it's really annoying, sometimes like just sit down.

45:03 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
But I know it from myself. Sometimes it's just someone who gives time to listen to your frustration. So when you have said what you find annoying about another person, then it leaves your system. But sometimes we, or I as a parent, I want to go to the finish line first, where Cecilia is a little better and actually taking good care of something that you don't have a lot of. No, that's what patients call patients. Yeah, that's stupid, yeah, stupid words Patience.

45:36 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
That is a good piece of advice. I've patients with it and I have another one, which is actually this is this whole is true for any relation. If the relation is important and you want that relation, you need to have something to do together. You need to have something other than the relation. Something to share could be the passion of literature. It could be that you have children together. You know that's a lifetime commitment and you have something that you're doing together. That's the parenting.

46:11
And with the kids, what we do, if we feel, is when they were younger we would more be in control of it and just do it because they were small and now they are big. So we talked to them about it. But it's having that common ground. So would you be interested in, let's say, watching all the Star Wars movies together? Would that be something both of you would like to do? And then maybe that's what they do, and then they have the Star Wars universe to talk about and maybe do drawings about.

46:44
And that's a common ground. They have something together and they can unfold the relation inside this common ground. Maybe everything else they're interested in is different. One is all about the fire trucks and another one is all about football. What are they going to do together? But maybe you will find a passion for flowers or music or cooking or whatever. And we are now, but our kids are older. Just took all the talking I talked about before, years and years of talking to get them to a point where they all understand that if you want that relation to be good, you have to find that common ground.

47:24 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
You have to.

47:25 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
And maybe it's not your favorite thing to watch the Star Wars movie, but maybe it's an interesting, just a little bit, and you could do it because you want to do something together. The important part is that together it's not the Star Wars. You can be care shitless about Star Wars, not your thing, but maybe that would be the thing at the end of stretching both of you so that you had something.

47:49
Yeah, you need something and no one should go do what the other one is passionate about like a servant. You have to find that thing. And in our family the all five of us thing or all seven of us when we have our daughter and son-in-law with us is we can always go for a walk. Everyone can agree on going for a walk. It could be nature, it could be a museum, it could be a city, it could be whatever. But if we go for a walk, we're all interested in going for that walk and we can go. We can go many hours, so that's like you can even laugh about it. But because it's so, I mean maybe not very interesting in and of itself, but if we go for a walk for two or three hours, everyone's talked to everyone, we all experienced something together. Now we're in some sort of desert environment and it's fun to look at the different nature and birds and come back and have a walk.

48:49
And everyone. We have that common ground we did something together and we also do that like one by one. I can cook with my son-in-law and I can draw with my one daughter and read with the other.

49:01 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
And then storm our older son. He is really fun in the way that he's more organized way more organized than I am yeah, yeah.

49:11
But he actually had made a rule for himself that he wants to make sure that he have a moment and interact with everybody in the family every day. So he's like, okay, now I have talked with that, boom, then I need to remember to talk with the other ones. And when he said that, first I was like, yeah, you are a wonderful, weird kid. And then I was looking at myself and I was like, okay, fuck, every day I get a moment together with one of my children, because I don't have that mental list of remember to honor the bond you have, because we live so much together that sometimes we are just hanging out in the vicinity of each other. But he actually made that rule and it inspired me and I'm trying to see if I can get into the habit of doing the same.

49:56 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
He asked him I think it's two weeks ago Because he was in a bad place. He was annoyed with things and frustrated and I don't know. He was in a bad place and I was trying to say okay, if you're in a bad place and don't know what to do, it's always a good idea to go back to your values, find out what's important in your life and then let's see how we can. It was in Mexico City. It's not for him. With 22 million people, people lying around in the street and the small things. He was feeling sensitive. He just can't have it. But he did want to go to see the Aztec treasures. So there was a reason for him to be there. But he was just off in Mexico City and I asked him going for that walk again. By the way, what are your values? And my 17 year old son?

50:45
he could spit it out like that Okay, I love and I can tell my core values are Sorry, go ahead. No, no, no, no, because I'm not going to paraphrase it, it's his values, but I just found that was very beautiful, that I felt, okay, I'm done, this is. You know, I can pat myself a little as a mother.

51:05 - Josie (Guest)
That's what I love. I can tell just the way you talk about him that he knows who he is and he knows what he values and like that's and I've heard you talk about it in a podcast before. That's so much more important than like oh, he can do multiplication or oh, he can read this novel Like it's.

51:19
he knows who he is and what he wants and how he can go about getting it for himself, and I think that's just like so important. And I love how much you stress like the emotional intelligence and the authentic expression, because I really feel like, especially in society, like those kinds of things are really suppressed. Like you're, you can often be shamed for expressing yourself authentically and I just I love that you're fostering that environment, your family. That's really inspirational.

51:44 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah. But I mean, after Mexico City I had to joke about the homeless, because that's my way of handling the rough reality of people just lying on the ground outside where we live. It is too much. So it's easier for me to go in and into a cynic joking mode, because to feel it, to actually feel it, ah, that's not nice. I don't like those feelings. No, no, no, yeah. But someone's not like that. No, someone's not like that. He doesn't have that cynic filter, cynical filter of the world, yeah.

52:23 - Josie (Guest)
But one of the I feel like. I have that a lot, but my husband doesn't really like that so much.

52:28 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
So I try to tone down the sarcasm and the jokes and stuff like that, cause it's and I could probably find a good way of expressing myself yeah, it's a survival mechanism sometime, you know.

52:38 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Yeah, when Storm could spit out his values and one of those values was it's important to me that I have really strong relations with my most important people in my life. He knows that and he knows how to get that. He knows how to arrive at that point and one of the things for him is he has this rule I spend some time with everyone in the family every day, find a way to do it, whatever way, and he's a little structured. He knows, you know, if I do that with mom and that with dad, and I get, I go through everyone every day and we touched upon each other. That's nice.

53:12
So I think, as a parent, if you want to empower the sibling bonds, you have to realize that that's your agenda. Maybe can I talk, maybe you get children who actually don't like each other and you have to respect that. Some children don't get that sibling bond. It's not an important relation in their lives. They grow up as very different people and they don't. They don't share any common ground. There is no stables for them. They just can't do it.

53:46
And I think if your agenda is that the bond should be really strong and warm and they have each other's backs and they're really brothers in life and you know all these things. It is your agenda and I think you should work with it because I think you're right, it's an important relation. There's no way around it. It will be an important relation. It will be important. If there's no relation, you will live with that.

54:08
And so, yes, do your best, but also realizing it is your agenda and for the most part, you could let it just unfold and have those conversations over all the years. Now we can brag about our wonderful 17 year old son, but yours are not 17 anymore. You have 15 years with one of them, and even more with the other, to work on that or to provide help so that they will land in a point where, when they are young adults, they will know who they are and what's important to them and maybe it's not family bonds. It could be something you find really strange, like it's very important for me to win the video game contest every year. That will not be my value, but you have to respect that it could be someone else's value.

55:06 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
There's another, really simple way of working on sibling bonds, which is don't give them separate rooms, don't give them a lot of separate toys. I've been in houses where they have the same Spider-Man but each have their own in different rooms, and that is not learning to share.

55:33 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
We also work by the slogan everyone gets what they need and provide with what they can, and that's always been like that. We don't share equal, we share what we have, making sure everyone gets what they need to the extent that we can give it to them. You have to look for what they need and you also have to look at who they are, and I think it's when they are small and yours are small. This whole room thing is not even relevant. They just share the space where you live and maybe at some point it is really important to have your own Spider-Man. Of course it's really important to have your own Spider-Man and we've been in positions where we had to buy four of the same thing, so each had their own, and it didn't make any sense financially. It didn't for us. It's like we really have to do that, but we really had to do that. So it's not about.

56:34
I don't think strong sibling bonds necessarily come from learning to share. I think that's actually my main point. Learning to share could ruin the sibling bond. If the parents have an agenda that you have to learn to share with your brother, that's really important and it just grows against the child's nature. I want to have my own pillow.

56:56 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
This is my space.

56:57 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
I'm gonna need that, then that's what it's gonna get.

57:00 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
I think my point comes more from the classical norm of every child has their own room with a lot of stuff in.

57:08
If you can start by challenging that, and, of course, if one of the child's is more secluded than one's room for themselves or whatever, well, that is what you provide. But there's so many things we do because we have been raised to do it and it's only a short period actually where the standard has come. My grandparents they had four children in an in two room apartment and that was normal back then, but then something happened and then everybody needed to have their own room, and the dad need to have an office and some needs to have a walk-in closet, and just gone crazy. And I find it important to step out of the norm and ask yourself well, what works for our family? What do we want? Do we want one playroom? Do we want one giant bed? What is it we need? And not based on what we think we need, but actually taking the time again to take the talks, the talks, the talks and figuring out what is right in your family.

58:11 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
And I want to clear something up. I said a lot about talking to the children about what they need and learning them to express, teaching them to express what they need and why they need it, and all these things. I think that's wrong to do with smaller children. Actually, I think with the small children you get to be parent and you get to see once they start touching the ear and the eyes and you know they're tired and maybe they don't know, but you know and you may say you're tired, I'll put them to bed now and the kid might say, oh tired, and then, okay, let's just sit here, you know, with the blanket and the book and within the line, and make sure you fall asleep, because you clearly need to sleep. And I think when the kids are younger, it can be very stressful for them If the parents take the responsibility to say I need this and I don't need that, like this and I don't like that.

59:05
You have to be very alert and watch them and make sure you watch them and see who they are and what might work for them and that star wars come and ground. It has to come from you, because they will not when they are like three and two years old and you try to find out what can they do together. It's not a lot, but you have to come up with it. Maybe we can all go for the walk that we always do in our family.

59:29
Maybe beach time is good time with the group that you can go to the beach and there will be some interaction and you get to decide that and they might all scream and shout they don't want to go to the beach, but once we get there they'll have fun and I think you really have to tone down the expectation that children can express what they need and why they need it and how they wanted it and what will make them happy when they are small. I think a lot of unschooling parents a lot of very good parents with very good intentions they overdo this thing and they get dressed out.

01:00:02 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Dressed out children, yeah.

01:00:03 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
It's okay to make decisions on behalf of smaller children, it's okay to make mistakes, it's okay to do your best and do it wrong and try again, and I think it's also okay to not do de-schooling, to just beware that. De-schooling is sort of just like a little lamp you've got lit inside your head, but not a process that I'm working on, just okay. Maybe that might be my schooling mindset. Wait a minute, I'll think about that next week when they stop vomiting, because actually they're asleep right now. No, but really, smaller children it's a lot of work. It's a lot of basic work. You serve like 95 meals every day and you change all the diapers and the washing machine is just going 24-7. And now someone fell and now someone's crying and now someone finally fell asleep. But then the dog started barking and oh my God, and you're so tired yourself and your breastfeeding with one hand and cooking a meal with the other.

01:01:03
I did that. I did that. I learned to include my foot in the kitchen work one of them because I had to stand on the other one because I was out of hands. I know how it is and I think it's very good to start now to think about unschooling and where you are. It's amazing to be there when the kids are that small. But don't stress out about it. Make your mistakes, have some fun, do whatever the best you can. I mean you'll be tired and you'll be not able. I mean just to have a cup of tea and look at the sunset or watching Netflix, whatever. It can be too ambitious and it's for everyone involved. And then it's a stressful, over-done environment that you're growing up in and that's not nice either.

01:01:51 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
I like someone put it in a way where it was like, oh, that's actually very fun, which is that if you have had your children at home and then reaches the schooling age and don't do it, it's a big step for you as a parent. It's like, oh, now I'm not sending my children to school, but your children are actually just continuing everyday life. That is not like they wanted to go to school or unless they've been programmed to, that's what you do.

01:02:22 - Josie (Guest)
Sometimes you have one that name you Did you ever have any of your children ask you like I wanna go to school, I wanna be like other kids, like how?

01:02:29 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
do you do that? All these child was in school throughout the whole thing. Oh, okay, kids have been to school. Yeah, an alternative, radical, whatever, but it was the school.

01:02:38 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, and Cynthia puts it that it sounds interesting sometimes what people are doing, but she's more like but is it really everyday? That was what she said when she was younger.

01:02:49 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Well, she says that sounds fun, but I don't have time to do that everyday.

01:02:52 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
No, why are they starting so early? It's kind of stupid.

01:02:56 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
I'm not getting up that early and I don't have time to do it.

01:02:59 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
And Storm tried. He tried one day of high school for fun with a friend who is a teacher. He, one of our friends, is a teacher at high school and he was like Storm, come, you should see what it is.

01:03:14 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
He came back and said the level is so low I can't handle it. That was fun? Yeah, no, they didn't.

01:03:23 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
No, no, they haven't, I mean they're still young, some of them might. But it is not our goal that they shouldn't go to school. If they really want, we would talk with them. But if they really want, of course, they should be their free human beings.

01:03:40 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
I wouldn't say, of course I would fight back. I don't regret anything in my life except that If I could go back and change, that's the one thing I would change plus that vaccine that gave me cancer, I wouldn't send my first child to kindergarten, and all those things I wouldn't send. And every moment my kids have spent in the care of strangers. I regret that, but nothing else. That's my rule, that's how I do it. I don't do regrets, but I will admit I regret that, but it's part of how you learned too.

01:04:20 - Josie (Guest)
That's how you learned. You didn't want to do that anymore.

01:04:22 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
She didn't have a bad life. It's not like she got brutally hurt by it or it was. I mean we provided a good home environment and we didn't expect I mean we were still on schoolers at home we didn't expect her to do any homework, and if she said she didn't want to go to school we were like okay.

01:04:36 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, I remember one day she was like mom and dad, I really don't want to go to school today. Okay, come on now you should actually say go to school. And we were just like well, it's your choice.

01:04:46 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
She said it's your job to force me.

01:04:49 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
And he said nope, and I said you know what?

01:04:55 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
No, no, it's not, that's funny. No, she said it jokingly, yeah, yeah siblings were not in school and you know she knew she knew the drill.

01:05:04 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, we have time for one final question, if there is.

01:05:09 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
And then the beach is calling all of her.

01:05:11 - Josie (Guest)
Yeah, I can only imagine. The only other thing that I had here is the actual, the original thing that I emailed you about and I wasn't even really sure if I wanted to get into it or not, because really I don't. I don't love to get into like especially political type of opinions too much because I don't think it's important for other people to have the same beliefs that I have, or anything like that. I was just curious, I guess based on the conversation that you had I don't remember the gentleman's- name.

01:05:41 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
That's the ring there. Yeah, patrick, yeah.

01:05:43 - Josie (Guest)
Yeah, yeah, Just based on that, I'm curious what you think in your own lives. What do you think the government's relationship with parenting or schooling should be ideally?

01:05:55 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
As little as possible, Absolutely as little as possible. I.

01:05:59 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Should be the last resource that the government has any yeah, and.

01:06:06 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
I think the and we come from a place with the so-called welfare system and I actually believe that it has hurt the family bonds in a way, because you get used to the system can take care of your week and when it is like that then you don't take in your sick brother or your old mom and dad. They will live alone in the house and then the social worker will come and help them because you don't want to have them living with you and that is sad and I believe that the welfare system sometimes have unfortunately broken down the family bonds because it is someone else's responsibility and not your own and I see that as a problem. To go back to your original question, should the state in any way go into family? Absolutely not.

01:07:04 - Josie (Guest)
I guess the context was just you were having a discussion about providing free schooling and free college and things like this, and it sounds like what you're saying is that you like to have it there as a last resort, when it's needed for people who choose that.

01:07:19 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Yeah, college and school is very different. It's two very different things. Schooling of children under the age of, I will say, 15, could be 16, whatever young children before they are older teenagers, I am 100% against that. I think it's a bad thing. College, that's even after high school. That's like a 20-year-old almost. I think that is a good thing Because at that point, hopefully it's voluntary, hopefully this is a young adult who wants to learn something and they go to school to do it.

01:07:55
We don't do colleges in Europe in the same way as you do it in the States. We don't go live there. It's not like this wild summer camp situation, but the learning. So let's just discuss the learning part of it, not the living situation. The learning part of being a college or university is 100% a good thing and I totally.

01:08:18
If there is one thing I think we should pay for as taxpayers, it is the education of our young adults. It makes so much sense that it's easy and accessible for everyone to get an education for free. In our country we even pay people to do it, so you get a salary, so you don't have to work, so that you can focus on what you're studying. It's a waste of time to give people free education if they can't actually find the time to read the books. So we pay them a salary and I think that makes total sense. And I'm putting a line between the two different things and the word in that line. It's like a crossword, word Crosswords, word going, word bling. It's called voluntary.

01:09:05
If you do it because you want to do it, it's completely different. It's the same thing with younger children. If, let's say, 12-year-old wants to learn to speak Chinese and you provide a Chinese course with a Chinese teacher and you have to show up every Wednesday at 3 o'clock prepared, then that's not against unschooling, there's nothing wrong with that. It's because the child wants to learn Chinese. Just like the example I had earlier. If your child wants to learn to read with a blackboard at 8 o'clock in the morning every day, if that's what they want, it looks like education, it is education.

01:09:38
But the big difference is that it's voluntary. So we think that the state should not interfere with family life and it should not interfere with the education of the younger children and it should be like a last resource if you're really out of energy or someone isn't often in there no neighbors, no grandmother, no one. Of course it's nice that you have someone, something I mean, it makes sense. The state is like the prolonged arm of the society, of the community of people living together in some space area on the planet. But I think that we have the problem now that in many places the state thinks it knows better that strong families are a problem, like almost like a sect situation, that you have to intervene if the family is too strong. That is really a problem.

01:10:42 - Josie (Guest)
I love that answer. I love that you stress that it's voluntary and it sounds like your ideal would be if you kind of like switched the systems where you take the money that's going into, like primary school education and like just throw it all into voluntary college so that they can choose that way.

01:10:56 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Obviously we couldn't just close the school tomorrow. I know that would be a structural problem and the parents are not ready for it and all these things.

01:11:02 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Right and a finishing thought for me is that, as Cecilia said, that the state thinks it knows better. I think a big problem is a lot of parents believe that the system knows better, and this is why we call our podcast self-directed, and it's one of the most important parts is take responsibility for your own choices and life. Use all the time to talk and think about why you believe what you believe, because it is so easy to just do what you're told is right, but your children can feel it if you're not true to yourself. And I think that is a giant problem we have is that we have not been taught to listen to ourselves in the way we have been brought up, and that is part of the whole D-schooling to figure out who am I actually, what do I believe in?

01:11:54 - Josie (Guest)
I think that's so important, it's such a good point and, for me, a lot of what I believe in is that it also starts with birth and like the system. And I'm not saying that people who choose to have births within the system have anything wrong, just that I feel like oftentimes that's where the power starts getting taken away from you and you don't feel like you can own your choices around your birth and stuff like that, and so I just I think that's really crucial. I appreciate that you brought that up.

01:12:18 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Yeah, it is time, so we should say goodbye. It was wonderful, just Josie. Thank you so much for having me on.

01:12:25 - Josie (Guest)
It was a great first podcast experience. You guys are a wonderful couple and I just I love what you're doing, so thank you.

01:12:31 - Cecilie Conrad (Host)
Thank you. Yeah, it was fun talking, but now the beach is calling, please go, please go.

01:12:36 - Josie (Guest)
I want you to wait another minute.

01:12:43 - Jesper Conrad (Host)
Thank you for listening. We hope you enjoyed today's episode and if you like that, then please share it with all your friends and family. We would also love it if you gave our podcast a review. Thanks, and if you want to support our podcast and work, then you can find us on patreoncom slash the Conrad family. We will continue to travel full time and if you want to tag along, then please follow us on Facebook and Instagram at the Conrad family, and you can also read more than 100 blog posts on our website. The Conrad family. Until next time, make a wonderful day, thank you.


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