****EDIT---- I am going to leave my original post as I originally posted it. But I want to add a few things. First, I'd ask that you also read my two posts on page 2, and my post on page 4. They clarify some of what I didn't say in this post, that could explain a lot (my husband's ADD, the fact that I suffer from OCD and various personality disorders, etc).
Secondly, when I wrote this post, I was literally spilling my brain onto a page. I probably should have edited myself better. I probably shouldn't have used the phrase "dumb myself down," because I realize that it is offensive. I was PMS-ing when I wrote this, and wasn't using the best judgment, or the best editing skills. I was just eager to get my thoughts out of my head so I could vent them somewhere.
Even though I seem elitist and judgemental and stuck on myself, it's not as bad as this post makes it sound. I think I went overboard, because in a way, I was venting years of frustration. Have you ever vented, and it makes you sound a lot worse than you are, because you were venting the dramatic version of how it seems in your head? Anyways, years of frustration, like I said.
Given that, I do have some serious issues, so I understand the "bleh" reaction some people have to what I said. I will take ownership, that what I said is offensive. Even re-reading it, I cringe. But please understand, I am trying to work through issues. Please be kind. Once I am a parent, I'm sure I won't feel this or that way about my kids, but I do still have fears, and obviously need help understanding different types of people. Most of my fears stem from the extreme differences between my husband and myself (which I still haven't adjusted to) coupled with my stubborn and anxiety-prone personality.
This is actually my first post. I don't have children yet (happily married), but I've been reading in this community because we may start a family soon (or we may not), and I'm interested in learning about many of the issues talked about here (vaccines, eliminating toxins, other crunchy things).
I stumbled upon this gifted forum because I was a gifted child, and I have a lot of questions surrounding this topic. The questions are targeted towards parents who have higher IQ;'s; it seems that a lot of parents in this forum probably do.......
Basically, I grew up in a family where we all had high intelligence, all 4 of us (2 kids, 2 parents) in the family, yet we weren't the type of smarties that had a hard time fitting in with our peers. Just the kind that process things on a higher level, and normally (almost always) have to dumb themselves down for others (something I've been doing all my life, to the point that it's pretty automatic). Around my family was one of the only places I DIDN'T have to dumb myself down. Yet, my parents were hard-working regular people, not really the "doctor/lawyer/professor/wine-tasting" type.
Just a little antecdote to give you an idea: At around 12-13 months, I was not only speaking in full sentences, but I had all my picture books memorized (pausing for page turns) and could recite them, in full sentences, not skipping a word. I was never encouraged to do this or coached, I just memorized my books because my Mom did read to me, as most parents do.
I always grew up thinking I would marry someone with an IQ close to mine, and highly communicative like me. Within my family, we really enjoy a quick-moving, witty conversation, full of the kind of humor that I normally find goes right over some people's heads (the finer nuances of it). Or, leaving humor out of it, just the kind of deep philosophical discussions that others might shy away from. My husband doesn't quite fit in with my family's "highly functional" (intelligence-wise) dynamic, but we still love him, and treat him as we would anyone who isn't us, which is with respect.
My husband's intelligence seems to be pretty average. He seems to be above average in math (doing well in things like calculus, physics, etc, and scoring way above average in math on standardized testing), but when I'm just "conversing" with him, to me, he seems to be right about average, if not, a little below average, in how he communicates. Both his ability to communicate, and his willingness to follow my "complex/deep" tangents, and want to keep that kind of conversation going.
Anyways....this has left me wondering where our kids will fall. I just hate to give up the idea of that intellectually-stimulating family life in my NEW (soon to grow?) family, that I had in my old family. And I hate to admit it, but I'm a little fearful I won't be able to relate to my future kids in the ways I always expected I would (on an intellectual level). .I just think back to all the friends in high school I merely "tolerated" but was really yawning the whole time. Will I experience that same type of frustration that comes with trying to reason with someone who just "doesn't get it"? I realize children have different levels they operate on, but even as a child, my Mom and I or my Dad and I would have deep discussions about theoretical things, and it was really one of my greatest joys, to connect with them like that. I can't imagine not connecting with my future children like that, but the reality is, I can't connect with my husband like that.
At the least, I'd want them to be good communicators (sort of genetically, as in, they have the ability to meet me close to my level when we talk), but my hubby doesn't really fulfill that (it's just something we've kind of worked around). I know it begs the question, "how do you tolerate your hubby?" It's a long story. We just work as life partners, kind of in the way that opposite attract. But I don't know if I could handle 4 other mini-non-communicators, and then I'd feel soooo outnumbered.
I have this mental image of me sitting at Thanksgiving dinner with my adult children, and it feeling how I feel when I don't have anyone near my intelligence in the room/group....that kind of isolated/bored feeling (not that that is bad; I adapt to it; but I just never thought I would have to around my own family). That is how I feel when I go to Thanksgiving at my husbands' family's. Whereas with my family, I'm always finally excited to connect on a deeper level and not have to dumb myself down.
I realize the people in this forum DO have gifted children, so my worry is kind of moot for you, but I am assuming quite a few of you are gifted yourselves. I'm wondering if you ever thought of the prospect of what life would be like if you were the only "gifted" one in your new family?
I hope this isn't coming across as snobby, because that isn't me. It's just that, these are my inner-most worries, and I need someone else that understands.
Do you all have "gifted" spouses? Could I be wrong in assuming my husband's intelligence is quite lower than mine, since he IS good at math, but just a poor wordsmith? (by poor wordsmith, I mean, if you saw an essay he wrote, you'd assume his IQ was 100)
Do your children's IQ's end up being more like an average (mean) of you and your spouse's, or is it more like....some kids get the higher IQ, some get the average IQ? (It's hard to tell by looking at my parents and us, since both parents are high IQ).
I just need some advice........I hope I haven't offended anyone......thanks.
PS---I am writing this at like 3 AM, after being up way too long. It rambled a lot, so forgive me if it doesn't flow well. I went back and deleted a lot of the wordy-ness, but I realize it's still wordy.
I also want to wrap up by saying that I certainly don't think I am in any way superior to others. I am just trying to find others who can relate to where I'm coming from....i.e., what it is to be "gifted" in a world where you aren't "average" or "the norm." But the problem is, it's YOUR norm, and like all humans, we want the luxury of being understood on our level.
Edited by bobcat - 12/7/10 at 7:21pm