A friend emailed me this link: What Non-Homeschoolers May Not Know. It's a list of things that friends, relatives, and neighbors who don't homeschool don't seem to understand.
Those for whom homeschooling is completely foreign tend to fall into two categories. One group seems to think that you spend eight hours in highly structured activities. The other thinks you do nothing all day long. The former thinks you are either a saint or a masochist. The latter thinks you have time to babysit their preschooler.
I don't agree 100% with this list. I don't want to use homeschooling as an excuse to not clean my bathroom or brush my hair. If manicured nails are your thing, a homeschooler has just as many hours on the weekend as a woman who works full-time to tend to that "need." Personally, my relaxed appearance and the often chaotic state of my home are the real me, and I don't notice people tsk-tsking over them. That doesn't mean that they don't, it just means that I'm not the type to care or pay attention. You would have to say some pretty obnoxious things right to my face for me to note your disdain of my lifestyle...but then, to say those things would make you a really obnoxious person and after a momentary flare of ire, I would likely calm down, forgive you, and make a mental note to avoid you in the future.
Also, I don't want any help - not with housecleaning, not with babysitting, not with schooling, not with money. I definitely appreciate educational gifts for the kids, but we're not poor by any stretch. I choose to not give my kids every little thing their hearts desire. And since my closest relatives are not local, Grandpa taking the boys to a museum or Grandma baking cookies with the little ones or Auntie doing weekly arts and crafts are not possible scenarios, and I just wouldn't be comfortable having neighbors do that sort of thing. Honestly, I hate it when a non-homeschoolers says, "Oooh, let me watch your kids for you one day next week. You need a break." Please, if you're going to have a pity party, find another guest of honor.
But that's just me, and situations vary. So the list is a good one.