Borders, Boundaries, and Beyond: #AtoZChallenge for April 3, 2017

Slices of An Unschooling Life Theme Reveal Post

Today’s Poetry Type:



Fear Brings Control

Limits imposed to control

Limits inspired by fear

Fear wriggles into cracks

Fear of what lies beyond

Beyond the limits of control

Beyond where we can know

Know what we don’t know

Know they can learn more

More than we will ever learn

More than we can imagine

Imagine we release them

Imagine life as open books

Books which offer freedom

Books which melt boundaries

Boundaries stop the flow

Boundaries make new walls

Walls they must push against

Walls that hem them in

In a place of control

In a space of resistance

Resistance breeds contempt

Resistance creates friction

Friction becomes tension

Friction tenses into mistrust

Mistrust changes learning

Mistrust breeds contempt

Contempt corrupts cooperation

Contempt corrodes connections

Connections are learning’s glue

Connections are essential

Essential for childrens’ growth

Essential for expanding minds

Minds untethered by boundaries

Minds freed to spontaneity

Spontaneity gives space for growth

Spontaneity allows inventiveness

Inventiveness brings new ideas

Inventiveness spurs creativity

Creativity makes a spark

Creativity expands their lives

Lives enriched by freedom

Lives filled with adventure

Adventure in their own home

Adventure in the world beyond

Beyond what we’ll ever know

Beyond the limits of control

Control can pull it all away

Control builds high walls



On the American Revolutionary War lines, at the Saratoga Battlefield, September 2016.
On the American Revolutionary War lines, at the Saratoga Battlefield, September 2016.

When we began our unschooling journey, our children were 7 and 4 years old. I was raised in a family that was at best authoritarian, and at worst emotionally, verbally, and physically abusive. Needless to say, our decision to partner with our children, and to stop enforcing arbitrary rules and punishments, was neither popular nor understood by my relatives.

“Children should be afraid of adults,” declared my father.

“All teenagers rebel, even if only a little,” wrote my sister.


When kids fear adults, it limits what they feel safe saying or doing where that adult is concerned. If they fear all adults, they can’t come to them in trust. Fear and trust are antithetical. If my children and others know they can trust me, they can come to me with big issues, mistakes, and their fears, knowing I’ll do what I can to help them.

Many people see teens as “rebellious” by nature, but I don’t agree that all teens rebel. I’ve known dozens, and am parenting one, who do not.

Rebellion requires something to push against.  

When there are too many constraints on a young adult – because that’s what adolescents are –  they can’t do the essential work of becoming independent, and they have little choice but to rebel. When parents instead assist their fledgling adults in gaining that independence, building a strong foundation throughout childhood – there’s nothing there to resist!

For us, with a fifteen year old son, and a daughter nearing her thirteenth birthday, artificial boundaries only inhibit our children’s ability to grow into strong, capable, self-possessed adults.

Did you have artificial boundaries imposed on you, as a child?
Did you rebel against them, even a little?
Have you imposed boundaries with your own children?
Are they working out, or adding stress?
Is there a restriction you could lift or ease?

You can find more bodacious and boundless B posts at other points along the Blogging From A-Z April Challenge. Click this link, or the icon below, and you’ll be beamed up without delay!

This post is my Mindful Monday for this week. Find more mindfulness at Colleen Cheseboro’s A Mindful Journey. 

Come on back tomorrow to celebrate Creative Chaos!

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