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Support for Parents of Gifted Children, #2

post #1 of 426
Thread Starter 
I'm starting to have "bragging" issues again. It doesn't feel like bragging to me, until I read that other people are worrying about their children because they're not doing the things that BeanBean is. Take the "Toddlers" thread I'm subscribed to-- most of the other mamma's aren't worried about their kids, but every now and then someone will post something wondering if there's something wrong with their child because they're not talking in sentances or something like that. Every time it happens, it sticks out to me and I start to feel guilty. I've found myself working extra hard lately to be imprecise when I discuss what he's doing. Someone asked if other children like cars and trucks and I started to type about BeanBean's fascination with anything on wheels, and how he distinguishes between "trucks" (pickups) and "tractor trailers." Mike's a manager for a trucking company, so he's seen them separate and says "that's the tractor, that's the trailer" and such. Mike gave him a toy tractor trailer last week, and in the car he asked me for the truck. I gave him the trailer and he said "No, mommy, I want the tractor!" and started to cry.

I've discovered something else: I think that it's perfectly normal for children to want to potty learn at 14 months. It's well within the spectrum of normal, from what I've been seeing lately. Lots of parents have children that age who want to get out of diapers, I've seen loads of posts about it. It seems to me that the combination of cloth diapers and attentive parents makes the difference, and not any special talents or abilities of the child or parents. Just paying attention, you know? There are some kids who really aren't interested in potty learning at 14 months, but it seems to me that lots of kids are if their parents are aware of the signals. BeanBean only seems extraordinary in this respect when compared with children who's parents, for whatever reason, are not as aware of them. The most extraordinary thing about it was the speed with which it happened. I decided to make a concerted effort and he was diaper free in about a week.

When compared with children on this board, I'd be willing to bet that he's a lot closer to average when it comes to the potty. For some reason, that makes me feel better about the whole thing.
post #2 of 426
I feel two ways about the bragging issue, and unfortunately they're in conflict. I was essentially bullied off of my birth club message board -- the people there perceived me as an elitist and delusional braggart and jumped at the slightest opportunity to shut me out. :

That being said, though, I always have (and since my board ostracism, even more so) tried to minimize or speak vaguely about things that Lou is doing in much the same way that you describe with your ds and the trucks/trailers.

On the other hand, why is it not every mother's right to tell the truth about her child's activities? To me, bragging is prideful exaggeration of the truth with the intent to make someone else feel inferior, and of course that's wrong. However, is carefully scrupulous truth-telling about your child's activities "bragging" in any sense, especially when your intent is to share some achievement of theirs you think is really cool?

Anyway, feel free to "brag" here.
post #3 of 426
I have seen the moms of "gifted" kids get slammed here for making us moms of "regular" kids feel bad. I think it is silly. My son is 5.5 & he knows his letters & the sounds they make. He can write all the letters & sound out words. He has not discovered the cure for cancer or written an award winning novel- & that is okay!! I am able to share in the joys of the moms whose kids are reading at 2, talking at 6 months, etc, without feeling like you are trying to take some joy away from me.

My best friend's daughter has autism. ( How many times have I typed that in this forum?! ) She is seven and is still in diapers, she is non verbal & will probably never live on her own. & yet I feel I can tell her mom when Joe learns to add, or read a story, etc...

If she can be happy for me, I can be happy for you!!
post #4 of 426
Thread Starter 
For the most part, the moms in the Toddler thread are cool-- but then, I spend a lot of time walking on eggshells. Toward the end of my pregnancy, and for the first few weeks post partum I wasn't as careful (TBP! ) so now I find myself backing out slowly. :LOL

I remember people saying things to my mother about us and her not knowing what to say, but after they left she'd always make smart-mouthed (pun intended) comments to us. Someone would say "Wow, did you know that your kids are really bright?" and she'd kind of mumble a bit while they went on and on about whatever. After they left, mom would say "No, I thought they were idiots until you told me just now!" or "I had no idea that they were smart until they started school, talking in full sentences at a year wasn't a clue at all!" So, like many other bright children, I grew up thinking that it was something to be ashamed of. Being bright was also something that was taken for granted; we were expected to behave in a certain way, all while pretending that we were normal. It certainly didn't help us grow into useful human beings. I've never held a job that paid more than minimum wage, look how far my "high IQ" has gotten me.

I'm working very hard to do better with my kids. I want them to know that it is okay to be smart and even okay to be smarter than other people, but that it doesn't make them better than anyone else. I'm happy that they have certain gifts and I want them to be happy with that, too. I'm also happy that (thus far) they aren't the same kind of child that I was. I don't need them to be any smarter than they are, and I refuse to pressure them into seeming to be smarter than they are. When people tell me they think my kids are very bright... well, I guess I'll just say "Thanks, your child is very ___" and move on.

When a child is beautiful, you get comments on that (and goodness, BeanBean gets them all the time) even though it's something you're born with; we're not supposed to be pleased that people notice that, either. Well, my kids' mental health is more important to me than that. If someone compliments my child's appearance, I'll say "Thanks, I think he's beautiful, too," or "Yeah, I like his eyes too," and not feel horrible about it. So why is it so much harder with intelligence? I guess it's because with looks, other parents feel like they have less of a role. That's *all* genetics, there's no real strong nurture component to it. With intelligence, other parents feel like maybe they're doing something wrong, and that makes me feel guilty.

I've got a good answer, I guess I'll just have to work on using it in real life. Good grief, I'm exhausted! And I still have to drive home. *sigh* I guess I'd better go eat.
post #5 of 426
Quote:
To me, bragging is prideful exaggeration of the truth with the intent to make someone else feel inferior, and of course that's wrong. However, is carefully scrupulous truth-telling about your child's activities "bragging" in any sense, especially when your intent is to share some achievement of theirs you think is really cool?


Thank you! Sure wish other people felt that way.

Hi Mamas! I posted one other time on the old thread, but the baby was so new then I hardly had time to read, let alone post. I'm hoping I can be a bigger contributor this time.

My brag for the day?

I was getting into the cabinet today, where I keep my candles. Ds1 was nearby and came running (he loves to help me light candles) and asking if I was 'planning on using a tea-light, a taper or a votive.' I think he knows more about candles that me
post #6 of 426
Okay since we are bragging, my 3yo started reading for real this week! She was begging me to point to every word as I read her books, and she has been sounding out, or trying to sound out words for a long time. I got her some early readers and she's reading them!! She's on book 4 already! I'm just so proud of how hard she's trying. She has such an inner drive and a love for learning and that's what I'm proud of more than the fact that she's reading.

I did not follow the other thread, but does anyone's gifted kid have SID or related issues? We took my 3yo to a child psychologist to get some help with behavior and social problems and she wants us to get her tested for SID. She also wants to get the Early Intervention folks to get her IQ tested to see if we can get her into special programs but not sure that's going to happen since the schools are so limited with money.

Dh and sprung for a good preschool recommended by the psych for gifted and bright children. We feel she needs to be around her own peers to learn social skills, and she enjoys the "get-away-from-the-baby-and-be-a-big-girl" time.

As far as comebacks to comments on her being so bright, I try to add humor to it like, "Yeah it's scary that my 3 year old is smarter than I am!"

Darshani
post #7 of 426
double post
post #8 of 426
Darshani, I cannot wait to respond to your post, but dh will probably be working a 12+ hr work day today, which means I won't hardly have a minute to myself. Your posts often having me nodding my head in a 'wow, our kids are similar' kind of way, so I promise to come back later tonight when everyone is asleep to tell you more about my ds1.
post #9 of 426
Ohhh I can't wait! I'll be checking in tonight for sure!

Darshani
post #10 of 426

I Am Going To Scream!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!

ARGH!!!!!

OK, I have been typing for 45 minutes now and was almost finished with my book of a message, and somehow, I hit a key (don't know how or which key) and erased the whole message.

I seriously feel like crying right now. I was too tired to begin with, but decided to post anyway, and now it's wiped out, erased, vanished.

:

Maybe I'll get the energy to post tomorrow. It's already 10:30 here and I can barely keep my eyes open.

Wah! Wah!

It was such a good post, too! Damnit!
post #11 of 426
Oh that really stinks!!! I'm so sorry, I hate when that happens. Well maybe tomorrow if you have time, you'll think of even more good stuff to type. I'm really curious now!

Darshani
post #12 of 426
I posted this under the nighttime parenting forum but wanted to share it here too. Abi's mind just goes and goes. It's tiring but oh it's so fun too! This is from my journal today:

-----------------

Abi is back to her bad sleeping habits again. The girl just has a hard time shutting down. Last night she came running to our bed. V had gotten up to go to the bathroom and found Abi in his place when he returned. Sighed, grabbed his pillow, and tromped off to Abi's bed. So I found myself, joyfully, sandwiched between my two daughters. Nitara on my right, her little body pressed up against me with her chubby hand holding a fistful of my shirt. And Abi on my left, trying hard not to kick me as is her habit. Every time I closed my eyes Abi would start to talk. As much as I wanted to sleep, I was cherishing these last days of her early childhood when she still wants to snuggle up to Mommy and talk about the kinds of things that 3 year olds talk about.

"Mommy, there are shadows in my room. I got scared."
"Abi, shadows are okay, they won't hurt you. The are not real."
"What are shadows?"
"A shadow is made when something gets in the way of the light."
"What is that shadow on the ceiling made of?"
"That's from Nitara's pump. See the pump bag, and the light is under it?"
"That light is flashing. It's scary. It looks like lightning."
"Yes, it does. But it's not scary. Nitara's drinking her milk. It will turn off soon."

"Mommy? Mommy?"
"What, Abi?"
"What happened to that spider? What happened to Charlotte?" (she watched Charlotte's Web earlier that day)
"She died, honey. She got old and died."
"Why did she die?"
"She got very old and tired and she died."


Abi starts sobbing.
"Abi, honey, what's wrong?!"
Sobbing continues for a couple minutes and she mumbles some stuff I can't understand.

"Abi, tell me, why are you sad? Are you scared?"
"Noooo"
"Why are you crying?"
"I don't want my soft blankie to die! Waaa haaa hahh!"
(Trying not to laugh) "Your blankie won't die, honey. It's not old."
"Okay Mommy."

"Mommy?"
"Yes, Abi, what is it? I'm tired."
"What is that line on my hand?" (holds up her hand showing light from the slats of the blinds)
"It's moonlight, it's coming in from that window, see?"
"I have a stripe on my hand! Look!"
"Yes, Abi, now go to sleep, okay?"

"I see the moon and the moon sees me. God bless the moon and God bless me."

"Mommy, what is God?"
(I start to panic a bit-- should I talk about God in general or bring up Hindu gods or what?? Decide on the generic God because it's easier.)
"Umm . . God is a special person who loves you and takes care of you."
"Why I can not see God? Where is God?" (sounding very suspicious)
"You can't see God, honey."
"I can see Nemo. Nemo is real. God is pretend."

"Okay Abi, sure, Mommy's really tired. Please go to bed now."
"Okay Mommy."

"Mommy?"
"YES, Abi???!!"
"We love each other so much."

When I woke up in the morning she was still hugging me in her sleep.
post #13 of 426
My dd is 28 months and her giftedness became obvious when she recently started pulling pranks and making up jokes (puns). I called my sis who works in child develpoment and has a MA and she was blown away. We went to a homeschool preschool fieldtrip (our first one) and she was holding her own with the 3 yos no problem. I looked at a listing of criteria for gifted preschoolers and she is definitely there.

She has probably known most of her colors for a year. Best of all, she is a very caring and generous child

I too find myself holding back b/c I dont want to sound like I am bragging. Honestly, I had no experience with kids prior to having her, so I didn't realize how far ahead she is.

I'm glad this thread is here. I feel a profound sense of responsibility to not short-change her.

thistle
post #14 of 426
Quote:
My dd is 28 months and her giftedness became obvious when she recently started pulling pranks and making up jokes (puns).
The sense of humor is one aspect I really enjoy with a gifted child. Having a three year old with working knowledge/appreciation for irony & sarcasm can really help the day along, lol.

Britishmum--- I don't know if you believe this, or if you would find this helpful, but with DD we told her that when people get old they are *ready* to die and that has really helped her. She understands the concept of being done/bored with something and it makes sense to her that eventually people would be done with their life on earth. Now, that doesn't actually adress death of young people, but we pretty much gloss that over.

DD has been very into Harry Potter for quite a while. When she saw it the first time, I didn't hesitate *much* because I figured there was nothing too scary. What upset her, though, was the fact that Uncle Vernon & Aunt Petunia were so MEAN. We had already adressed death and the fact that she would go w/Nana & Poppa if both DH & I died... but movies would have you believe that gardians are the DEVIL. I assume it was a fairly permanent scar giving her continuing obsession.
post #15 of 426
A friend of mine who is a school principal tells me that she counts the number of minutes at the new parent night for pre-k kids until someone asks the question "How will you challenge my gifted child' She says that she has never made it more than 10 minutes.

She also said over the past 10 years the person who asked that question had a child who was later classified as gifted twice and twice the person's child was later classified as learning disabled.
post #16 of 426
I know there's a lot of teachers/principals who just roll their eyes when parents talk about gifted kids to them. I think it's important that if your child are going to attend school, that they are tested or at least evaluated by a professional and you can get that on paper. My dd was having some behavior problems and we took her to a child psychologist. It now says in her file that Abi is very bright, probably gifted. I'm getting her tested by Early Intervention sometime soon, too. EI and others will often recognize that giftnedness comes with its own set of special needs and it's a great tool to have in order to make sure your child remains challenged in the classroom.

One other great thing that's happened in our lives. I found a school that's especially for bright/gifted kids. It's right down the street and it's free (charter) K-6!! I have her in the preschool program and pay for that, but it's worth it to us. WI told the teacher on her first day, which was yesterday, that Abi is an early reader, can count to 50, is writing her upper and lower case letters, and I want to make sure she's challenged if she wants to be. The teacher didn't even bat an eye. It was great!

She said that some of the are learning those things, and they have work stations set up so the kids can choose their level when they have lessons. It's a wonderful school! They believe in hands-on learning. Yesterday Abi came home talking about the live tadpoles they brought into class because they were talking about frogs and their life cycles, and how the tadpoles looked like little ovals with tails.

Darshani
post #17 of 426
Quote:
A friend of mine who is a school principal tells me that she counts the number of minutes at the new parent night for pre-k kids until someone asks the question "How will you challenge my gifted child' She says that she has never made it more than 10 minutes.
:LOL With us, visiting pre-schools, it was the exact opposite. We carefully searched for a school that would have limited/no academics--- DD is enough of a perfectionist & she doesn't need any additional stress.

I'm not sure what you are getting at on a clearly labeled *support* thread, though?
post #18 of 426
Thread Starter 
Maya, this is a support thread. It is not here for people to log on and tell us that our children probably aren't gifted. If we didn't think we belonged here, we wouldn't post.
post #19 of 426
I don't know if DS is gifted or not, but I know he's smarter than the average bear and I really, really want to brag about him right now, just flat out, unabashed bragging. Is that OK with everyone?

He is 22 months. He can recite his alphabet and knows most of the letters by sight. He can count to 15 and knows 1 - 10 by sight. He knows all the colors, even weird ones like gray and pink. He can spell his name. Today, just a little while ago before his nap, he completely amazed me by "reading" a book to me, from memory.

Phew! I feel better now after getting that out of my system, thank you! I tend not to talk about the things he's doing very much.

OK, back to your regularly scheduled thread, lol.
post #20 of 426
I'm back. :LOL I just remembered a conversation I had with DS a few nights ago at 2:00 AM. USAmma's post reminded me of it, you all might get a kick out of it.

DS woke up crying and calling for me (he sleeps in a crib) so I went and got him and got back into our bed with him. He was quiet for a while but wasn't going to sleep, so I asked him:

Me: Cole, did you have a bad dream?
DS: Yup.
Me: What was it about?
DS: A turtle was biting Cole's arm.
Me: A turtle?
DS: Yup. It said, "Hi, Cole, how are you doing?" Then it bit Cole's arm.
Me: Then what happened?
DS: Cole said, "No, no, turtle! Don't eat Cole's arm!"
Me: That sounds scary.
DS: Yup.

I guess he just needed to get it out, because he went back to sleep soon after that.
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