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#1 of 20 Old 08-24-2009, 10:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm pondering how giftedness affects sibling relationships, and parenting in the context of multiple kids. Looking for insight from parents on what they feel they've done right or wrong, or good books.

Background on us: My firstborn is 7, and she's one of those kids that's not just gifted but "different"- we have not done testing of any kind. She's a great big sister, but just obviously not "typical"- she talks about topics and uses words way beyond her years. My second born is 2, and just seems so much more "normal"- he's hit lots of milestones early, but is very different from my first- he may also be gifted, but he's not yet verbal the way my first was at this age. Its seems his strengths are in different areas than hers. And we are expecting baby #3 anytime now.

I'm not sure what I'm asking, just wondering if you feel like giftedness has affected how your kids relate to each other, or if you even think it matters.

Laura, Mama to Mya 7/02, Ian 6/07 and Anna 8/09
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#2 of 20 Old 08-24-2009, 10:48 AM
 
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I cant say from my girls (they are almost 4 yr old twins)---

but my 2 sibilings and I are all gifted and all were distinct personalities.

Older brother: classic gifted, SUPER early reader, introverted, full of trivia, advanced in all academic areas, cruised through schooling, but not creative

Self: gifted (per testing), but struggled harder in school, early reader, not a 'trivia' person, creative

Younger sister: read a bit early- but quickly became advanced, extroverted, very organized, always very mature and socially aware, creative, more 'globally' balanced, leader type personality


All three of us are very different personalities and did very differently (but all good grades) in school--our giftedness displayed itself in different ways. I know my older brother have IQs w/ point of each other (younger sister never tested, but in gifted programs). He always seemed the 'smart' one and I was the 'creative' one. We got along, but were more competitive as students/kids....

Giftedness can show in different ways and learning styles--even within the same family.

As adults we all get along beautifully.=]
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#3 of 20 Old 08-24-2009, 01:39 PM
 
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Of my four, only Bean has been tested; He scored in the profoundly gifted range on the SB-V. He's very verbal and always has been. He's also very outgoing and sociable, has lots of friends and no trouble interacting with age-peers or intellectual peers. He is "different" but it doesn't seem to affect him adversely.

BooBah hit her physical milestones very early, and I'm pretty sure that she hit her other milestones early as well but I didn't notice because she was so far behind her brother. She's not as academically strong as her brother, but she's not behind either... it's just that while her brother wants to read about energy sources, she wants to see how long she can hang from the swingset by one leg. Her fine and gross motor skills are both *years* ahead of her brother's, and her reasoning style is very different but equally successful.

Bella was late hitting every single milestone until last year. She was older when she started crawling than BooBah was when she started walking. I was sure that Bella was very average, despite the fact that she had a long attention span even as a little person. This year at three, she's doing kindergarten work with her sister. I'd say that she's keeping up, except that she's being held back. She's very quietly focused (as opposed to the very loud, powerful drive of her brother) and lots of fun.

Bear is a baby, but he's got lots and lots of words and he knows a few letters & numbers (Bella's been obsessed with them for some time now). Development-wise, he seems to fall somewhere between Bean and BooBah. He walked around a year, first words a bit earlier than BooBah's but he still prefers individual words to full statements. He can follow simple directions, ("Go get a diaper from your room and bring it back to me," "Get the ball and throw it to your brother," etc) and since we removed wheat from his diet has been absorbing more information at the ridiculous pace to which I've become accustomed.

Has giftedness affected their relationships? I'm not sure. I will say that their family activities seem a little strange to outsiders, though. Bean is teaching BooBah to play some of his favorite computer games, and is very proud of her when she shows a strong aptitude for a game that he's just not very skilled with. There isn't a ton of rivalry around here, the four of them are very much a group. Bella and BooBah work together on kindergarten, and neither seems offended that the other is there; On the contrary, BooBah is happy to share school time with her younger sister. (Bella says she's not a preschooler, she's a homeschooler. ) We had a few incidents of BooBah taking books from Bella because she's "only three and can't read yet," but that's ended and now she's fine with it. Bella may start school next year, and is very likely to quickly find herself in Boobah's classes if not beyond them. I'm not worried about it right now, I think that the girls will be fine.

Does giftedness affect my parenting? Hell yes. I offer a lot more in the way of explanations than do other parents of children the ages of my kiddos (though I will say that in my experience, most children appreciate this as well as the fact that I don't talk down to them). My expectations have to be constantly monitored-- I have to be consciously aware of the fact that I'm dealing with a six year old, even if he's discussing an esoteric scientific concept with me and holding his own, because he's still a little guy who won't remember to use the toilet before we leave the house, and who will flip out when he drops his popsicle. Each child is an individual, and I need to be aware of the discrepancies between their intellectual abilities, their physical abilities, and their emotional abilities. Those discrepancies tend to be much broader when you're talking about gifted children.

I'm not sure if I really answered your questions... but I hope that's helpful.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#4 of 20 Old 08-24-2009, 01:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Rynna, I always love reading on here about your kids, and it makes me feel a lot better knowing that at least for them, its no big deal that everyone has different strengths.

Laura, Mama to Mya 7/02, Ian 6/07 and Anna 8/09
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#5 of 20 Old 08-24-2009, 06:10 PM
 
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I'm pondering how giftedness affects sibling relationships, and parenting in the context of multiple kids. Looking for insight from parents on what they feel they've done right or wrong, or good books.

This is an area that has not been studied and discussed much in gifted literature.

The book Living with Intensity, discusses this some.

As an example...
My one gifted child, is always singing when she is working. She always makes up tunes. I think in a way it is part of intellectual OE... her mind just keeps going and going. My other gifted child is very sensitive to sound, and when focusing on something, can not deal with sound distraction.
Needless to say, these two traits are at odds with each other, and often fights break out over this.

DD2 is very much an INTENSE child. Nothing is happy, it is AMAZING!! Nothing is sad, it is the end of the world. She is always overanalyzing everything. She is very physical, bouncy, etc.

My dh, who is gifted, is far more like my other daughter... his sense of touch, is more muted... the bouncy/huggy/kissy/intense.... that just overloads him and really touches a raw nerve with him, so he has to focus reallllllly hard not to let it bother him.

While some of this can just be personality differences, sometimes it is OE differences, and the intensity of every member of my family, but in different ways, has a way of affecting familial relationships.

At a pure minimum, the intensity of my kids, has definitely had an affect on me, and my ability to do things.

The affect of giftedness and OE's on a family is a complex thing, and despite it's importance, has not bee studied much.
Tammy
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#6 of 20 Old 08-24-2009, 09:43 PM
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My kid's sibling is not here yet, but my experience as a sibling did profoundly affect my childhood. My sister was like the OP's older child, and I was like the younger, only we were a lot closer in age and the same gender, which only exacerbated the competiveness/rivalry factor. The thing is, I've thought about it and I don't think there's anything my parents did wrong or could have done differently - we were both gifted kids acutely aware of the other's giftedness. I did everything I could to "catch up" to my sister, and she did everything she could to hold me back/put me down.

As teenagers, we went to different schools, and at that point and beyond we actually became pretty close and get along well now. And FWIW, we do have a younger sister who is also gifted, but she was so much younger as a child than us that the rivalry was not there. So OP, maybe you will be spared those issues.

eilonwy, I hope my experience as a parent is closer to yours than my mother's. Sounds like your kids have great relationships with each other.

DD 04/07 DS 12/09
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#7 of 20 Old 08-24-2009, 10:55 PM
 
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Originally Posted by OTMomma View Post
I'm not sure what I'm asking, just wondering if you feel like giftedness has affected how your kids relate to each other, or if you even think it matters.
We have a 3.3 year age difference between our girls. One is now 8 and the other 5. My first response would be to think No, I don't believe giftedness as an impact on their relationship. But when I think about it and how we have parented I have to admit that we may have taken advantage of it.

There were times when ODD was younger where I did use her natural empathy and reasoning skills to hopefully squelch any sibling rivalry. Today they use these techniques with each other and negotiate all the time. They both have benefited from the opportunity to teach/learn from each other and they do work very well together. I think most of these things could happen in any sibling relationship, gifted or not though. I think the fact that they are both highly empathetic, especially our eldest has really helped them though.

YDD did receive some side benefits. With ODD we were reactive to some of her issues which could be related to giftedness: her perfectionism as an example. Our youngest then grew up in an environment that was very proactive in regards to perfectionism and she had tools in place from the get-go to deal with it. Where we had to teach ODD not to give up, to set realistic expectations, etc. YDD already had the 'mantras' down and would go through them on her own with no prompting. It's one example of an obvious difference. YDD understood seemingly from the beginning that some things took time to learn, and based on her running commentary through some of those things we can tell it came from the proactive approach.

A benefit for me:

They both blast me with random and sometimes tiring questions and thoughts; "What if I was blind? Who would teach me braile? Would you get me a support dog? Would you help me count the steps from the door to the mailbox? What about when I grew and it would take me less steps?" They engage each other in many of these conversations and sometimes I don't have to be 'on' but instead can sit back and enjoy their exchanges.

As with almost all siblings there is the issue of the younger child being introduced to concepts at an age younger then might have been introduced otherwise. This I believe is normal between siblings. But sometimes I feel our youngest is growing even further beyond her years because of her sister. IE: Our eldest was 6 when she realized that our dollar bills said "In God We Trust" on them and many conversations ensued. Therefor our youngest was 3 when she first realized this and also would articulate that it could be offensive to some people. I think that the older childs asyncronicity can possibly deepen that within the younger child.
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#8 of 20 Old 08-24-2009, 11:07 PM
 
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Honestly I don't know what my children giftedness will do for their relationship as they are still only 6 and 3.

But I can tell you about my relationship with my siblings. I think that we are closer because of it. Unfortunately, I think we are closer because sometimes life seemed like us against the world. My older brother is PG and is the typical odd seeming socially awkward smart guy. He always seemed weird to people and had a tough time making friends as a result. Well when he was almost 4 years old this wonderful creature came into his life who had no idea he was weird. He'd been there her entire life and therefore didn't treat him like a freak. To his mind it was great to have a sibling who would listen to his obsessions and not look at him like he had two heads. I ended up being bright but not gifted. But bright enough in any case to get him alot better than other people tended to. My younger brother is MG and so we were a fun little tribe that were very protective of each other and could understand each other alot better than kids outside of our family seemed to. We all had our interests and seemed to go in our own directions so competition ended up not really being an issue. My older brother and I are alot closer to each other than my younger brother is to either of us. It might have to do with the tight bond my older brother and I formed early on when I was one of the first other children he had ever met who didn't think he was a freak. But think it has more to do with personality than with anything else.

Mom to DS 4/24/03 and DD 4/17/06
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#9 of 20 Old 08-24-2009, 11:18 PM
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subbing to come back later

I have three kids, three years apart. My first born is gifted (and now 15). My younger two (dd14 and ds12) are not gifted. We have had our share of struggles.

Be back later.......

Trying to do the right thing with three kids and a hubby. 
ds20, dd18, ds16

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#10 of 20 Old 08-25-2009, 01:04 AM
 
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My DD's sibling isn't here yet but I was a gifted child and have 2 younger brothers who are also gifted. However, we definitely are not all alike. Me and the middle brother are both very visual-spacial, and I would guess fairly similar in our areas of strength. But we were just barely 3 years apart and I think in part because we were so close in age, we both went in different directions in life. I'm the academic one--I went to grad school, I love to read, and I dream of being a published SF/F author, though I work(ed) in high tech. My middle brother is the creative one. He was always very visual-arts oriented and is a landscape architect. He is only now going back to school, at 30, for his BS. My youngest brother is a big techie, very computer-oriented, programs, does hardware, all that stuff. No creative arts for him, he is a math and logic sort of guy all the way.

As children, I was very close to the middle brother, but as an adult, I am much closer to the youngest brother. (I think part of that has to do with me living away from home during some very formative events for middle brother, though.)

Erin, mom to DD (1/06) and DS (10/09)
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#11 of 20 Old 08-25-2009, 02:30 AM
 
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I have four kids, ranging in age from 6 to 15. The eldest and youngest are the most "out there" gifted but I think the middle two are also very gifted, just less showy about it.

Anyway, I think that as unique and quirky as kids can be, gifted kids are that squared. And therefore my kids' experience growing up with their gifted siblings has given them a very robust education in 'differentness' and a humble and open-minded acceptance of it. If you have a 6yo sister who is discovered googling Gardisil out of curiosity after reading an article in a medical magazine, but who cries her heart out over not getting the second turn with the hula hoop, well, you develop an appreciation for the oft-incomprehensible weirdness of people.

My kids get along wonderfully for the most part. That probably mostly has to do with our homeschooling and our family problem-solving philosophy. But I think the giftedness running rampant in our family has made my kids unusually accepting of differences.

Miranda

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#12 of 20 Old 08-25-2009, 10:56 AM
 
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It is funny reading these replies. I get SO many WHAT IFS that I wonder where these kids came from lol.


Nick was tested with an IQ of 140, 3 years ago. He is very gifted in math and science, but could use some help in the reading department! He just has no interest. He is a god reader, but not where he COULD be if he put in some effort! He does have ADHD, but is not medicated.

Michele has not been tested, but I would like to get it done. With Nick it was free, since he was in an ADHD study. She was, however, put on the Autism Spectrum...but no one who has met/worked with her has ever believed me! She is in 1st grade and is 2 1/2 grade levels above her grade in reading, and about there in math.

Wyatt is only 2 1/2, but e is very smart. He is obsessed with writing (though for the life of me I can not get him to write his letters lol) He counts, says the months and days, and his letters. He also knows words to a lot of songs, besides kids songs! He was signing 2-4 word sentences at 6 months, and speaking them by 8 months!

Evan well, he is 2 months old lol. But he is already very "verbal" and "talks" a lot!

They all get along fairly well. They teach each other a lot!

Becka mama to Nick 10/99 Michele 02/03 : Wyatt 02/07 and Evan 06/09
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#13 of 20 Old 08-25-2009, 11:30 AM
 
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My one gifted child, is always singing when she is working. She always makes up tunes. I think in a way it is part of intellectual OE... her mind just keeps going and going. My other gifted child is very sensitive to sound, and when focusing on something, can not deal with sound distraction.
Needless to say, these two traits are at odds with each other, and often fights break out over this.
This is dd2 - she is always singing or talking or making noises while she does anything (at home anyway) - I believe it's both an intellectual OE and a psychomotor OE (that mouth has got to be constantly diffusing her energy). I am very sensitive to sound, so her constantly noisemaking when I'm focusing on something is hard for me to take. Her oldest sister is grateful to be in school because it bothers her a bit, but for the most part is okay with it. Younger sister doesn't seem to be bothered at all by it.

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DD2 is very much an INTENSE child. Nothing is happy, it is AMAZING!! Nothing is sad, it is the end of the world. She is always overanalyzing everything. She is very physical, bouncy, etc.
.....
that just overloads him and really touches a raw nerve with him, so he has to focus reallllllly hard not to let it bother him.
this is dd2 and I am like her dh. This has always made it tricky to parent her. I had to teach her some emotional regulation skills in order to turn down both of our intensities so we wouldn't clash so much.

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While some of this can just be personality differences, sometimes it is OE differences, and the intensity of every member of my family, but in different ways, has a way of affecting familial relationships.

The affect of giftedness and OE's on a family is a complex thing, and despite it's importance, has not bee studied much.
Tammy
It's quite a ride when OEs are involved. We have to "re-group" a lot when the OEs get overwhelming for one of us.

Plus, I have a high intellectual OE and I'm a stay at home mom, so all the while trying to work with them, I have an intense need to research things and discuss things so that I'm constantly in my own head (or on the computer). It's tough to meet their needs and my own.


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Originally Posted by EXOLAX View Post
As with almost all siblings there is the issue of the younger child being introduced to concepts at an age younger then might have been introduced otherwise. This I believe is normal between siblings. But sometimes I feel our youngest is growing even further beyond her years because of her sister. IE: Our eldest was 6 when she realized that our dollar bills said "In God We Trust" on them and many conversations ensued. Therefor our youngest was 3 when she first realized this and also would articulate that it could be offensive to some people. I think that the older childs asyncronicity can possibly deepen that within the younger child.
There is a 19 month gap in ages between my three girls. I've seen dd3 learn more things simply by observing what goes on with her sisters. We didn't let dd1 on the computer until 4.5. Dd3 insisted on going on the computer at 3.
Dd1 and dd2 read to us at night. Dd3 (4.5) insists on me pausing after reading each line of Dinosaurs Before Dark so she can read the line too. I can't remember some of the concepts she's picked up, but I know she's applied some things to new situations that she'd learned from them.

Mama of 3 girls: 7.5 , 6 , and 4.5
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#14 of 20 Old 08-26-2009, 09:45 PM
 
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Rynna, I always love reading on here about your kids, and it makes me feel a lot better knowing that at least for them, its no big deal that everyone has different strengths.
Thanks! I'm rather fond of them, and I think that they're doing pretty well. Of course, there's still plenty of time for them to be warped for live... but I'm optimistic.

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Anyway, I think that as unique and quirky as kids can be, gifted kids are that squared. And therefore my kids' experience growing up with their gifted siblings has given them a very robust education in 'differentness' and a humble and open-minded acceptance of it. If you have a 6yo sister who is discovered googling Gardisil out of curiosity after reading an article in a medical magazine, but who cries her heart out over not getting the second turn with the hula hoop, well, you develop an appreciation for the oft-incomprehensible weirdness of people.
I can totally relate to this paragraph.

Quote:
My kids get along wonderfully for the most part. That probably mostly has to do with our homeschooling and our family problem-solving philosophy. But I think the giftedness running rampant in our family has made my kids unusually accepting of differences.
I'm curious about your family problem-solving philosophy. Would you mind sharing a bit more?

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#15 of 20 Old 08-26-2009, 11:04 PM
 
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I'm curious about your family problem-solving philosophy. Would you mind sharing a bit more?
I guess in a nutshell we operate by democratic consensus. We have a tradition of family meetings, where we all get together in a spirit of collaboration (i.e. not when people are angry or resentful, but when everyone is happy and has been plied with yummy drinks and snacks -- usually once a week). And anyone can raise any issue ... and we talk our way to solutions by brainstorming, humour, perspective-taking, trial and error and so on.

Typically we'll go through a range of silly and not-so-silly proposed solutions. We'll hone in on one or two that seem reasonable to most of us. We agree to try one or two changes for a week, then re-evaluate. There's magic in that week-long trial. Honeymoon periods usually wear thin after a couple of days, so it's long enough to see if it's got long-term validity. If there are people who are reluctant to agree, they only have to give it a whirl for a week, at which point they've usually either changed their mind, or can honestly say "this really isn't working for me, because ___." That goes for me as much as for the kids. Often they'll propose solutions that I think can't possibly work; but my kids are free to prove me wrong, and I only have to agree to a week if it doesn't work out as they'd hoped.

The other thing that I find very helpful in our family meetings is that we take the time to go through a checklist of family issues, even the ones that aren't currently problematic. That means we celebrate the things that are working well, learn from them, express appreciation for the changes that have occurred and aren't simply spending meeting-time dwelling on all the negative stuff. We have a five-item standing agenda of things we always touch base on: housework, nutrition/exercise/health, balance of in-home and out-of-home time, academic/musical interests and the upcoming week's scheduled activities. If there aren't any real issues with those, we just congratulate ourselves on doing well, make mental notes on what is working, and move on.

We very seldom if ever make decisions by parental fiat. Everyone's voice is heard. I think that helps prevent petty power struggles from developing between children.

Hope that helps explain!

Miranda

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#16 of 20 Old 08-27-2009, 12:01 PM
 
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I have a clearly gifted older child (age 6) and an almost three year old. The three year old was not verbal until recently. The biggest problem I encountered was my hangups. Ava talked at 2.5 years the way Dylan did at 10 months. For this reason I never considered Ava gifted. I never taught her letters because she couldn't grasp saying the "ABC"s, I never cultivated her the way I did Dylan. I babied her intensely using excuses like she's still so little, or she can't talk yet...

It wasn't until she actually had an evaluation for speech therapy at 27 months that I was told she was in fact gifted. As in off the charts receptively and in most other areas. Verbally she was 14 months though and since Dylan's main area of excelling is verbally I didn't know how to pick up on this with Ava. There was a lot of guilt.

Ava is almost three and verbally has come a really long way! She is still not on par with her peers though. She still can't say her ABCs but she points to letters and identifies them. She doesn't count, instead she says, "2, 4,8,6, 9" and stuff like that but she can identify numbers and do addition and subtraction with her plastic animals or marbles.

Evergreen- Loving my girls Dylan dust.gifage8, Ava energy.gifage 4 and baby Georgia baby.gif (6/3/11).

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#17 of 20 Old 08-27-2009, 06:00 PM
 
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My boys are very different, but I have a hard time saying that one is more intelligent than the other. BUT my oldest is more traditionally gifted- he is extremely introverted, soaks up knowledge like a sponge, is very interested in just about everything, can be rather socially awkward, over-thinks everything, tests very well, skipped a grade, etc. He was a mellow, happy baby. Loved food, walked at a year, was a big baby and toddler.

My youngest is more socially at ease, isn't always so interested in different topics, is athletically talented, lets things roll off his back, learns things relatively quickly, but doesn't seem to learn stuff by osmosis like my oldest. He was doing 50+ jigsaw puzzles at 2 though. He was a miserable baby that never (and I mean never) selpt, hated food. Walked full time at 8 months, rode a bike without training wheels before he turned 4, was a tiny baby and still is a tiny kid, etc...

They both potty-trained pretty early (by 24 months, child-led), had a deep understanding of the world at an early age, have a strong sense of right and wrong, learned to read at similar ages.

I do find myself comparing them a lot (in my mind only). It just amazes me how they both can be so different, yet have striking similarities too. They have a very good relationship. Of course they bicker like brothers do, but they love each other very much. My youngest has a competitive streak and my oldest likes to make sure he's in charge, but even my oldest doesn't think he's smarter than the youngest- he chalks any differences up to age. He's 2.5 years older. Incidentally, I can see that my older son gets jealous of my younger son's athletic ability and natural assertiveness. He sometimes wishes he had an older brother because he thinks that would have made him as he calls it 'tougher'. I think it's just his personality though, or heck, maybe it is a factor, I don't know.
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My sister and I have a very tight bond, seeing as she's only 2.11 years older than me. But we've fought, mostly because she is so much better at math (and maybe even science) than me. And it's hard comparing myself to her. Oh, and by the way- she's had straight A's all her life except for a B she got in second grade. It's hard to be better than that. Otherwise, we're very close. We teach each other a lot and enjoy each other's company. But there is indeed a lot of competition going.

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#19 of 20 Old 07-15-2011, 11:31 AM
 
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I was identified as HG early in elementary and was a typical high achiever throughout school. My sister tested (at some point) with a nearly identical IQ but never participated in any GTE programs or acceleration. She went on to become quite the rebellious teenager while I was a line-toeing firstborn. I think a lot of her rebellion was an attempt to be different from me--she refused to apply herself to school at all and seemed to relish getting low grades and having teachers call our parents about her failure to complete assignments and getting in all sorts of trouble in school and out. Being gifted and achieving academically was something that defined me, and I believe she was so desperate to create her own identity that she effectively denied her own giftedness.

 

I hope to avoid a similar situation with my girls, and thanks to some of perspective provided above, I realize that it is possible. I appreciate the anecdotes about siblings with different strengths and how gifted siblings can benefit one another. And thanks to several of you who reminded me yet again about OEs. DD2 is rife with them, and I'm now seeing a lot of oversensitivity cropping up in DD1. While I'm not sure that either is gifted (I would lay money on DD2 but not necessarily DD1, though she is quite bright), it's helpful to look at their eccentricities through the OE lens.

 

And to the mama who mentioned that she is incessantly trying to meet her own needs for stimulation by reading, being online, and being in her head (I can't find who it was right now), AMEN!


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#20 of 20 Old 07-15-2011, 01:26 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PinkBunch View Post

I was identified as HG early in elementary and was a typical high achiever throughout school. My sister tested (at some point) with a nearly identical IQ but never participated in any GTE programs or acceleration. She went on to become quite the rebellious teenager while I was a line-toeing firstborn. I think a lot of her rebellion was an attempt to be different from me--she refused to apply herself to school at all and seemed to relish getting low grades and having teachers call our parents about her failure to complete assignments and getting in all sorts of trouble in school and out. Being gifted and achieving academically was something that defined me, and I believe she was so desperate to create her own identity that she effectively denied her own giftedness.

 

I hope to avoid a similar situation with my girls, and thanks to some of perspective provided above, I realize that it is possible. I appreciate the anecdotes about siblings with different strengths and how gifted siblings can benefit one another. And thanks to several of you who reminded me yet again about OEs. DD2 is rife with them, and I'm now seeing a lot of oversensitivity cropping up in DD1. While I'm not sure that either is gifted (I would lay money on DD2 but not necessarily DD1, though she is quite bright), it's helpful to look at their eccentricities through the OE lens.

 

And to the mama who mentioned that she is incessantly trying to meet her own needs for stimulation by reading, being online, and being in her head (I can't find who it was right now), AMEN!

 

I got to thinking about your situation with your sister and you.  I think you might avoid such a situation in your own children by telling your story of how things were between you and your sister (in such a way to be realistic enough yet compassionate too - you don't want to paint their auntie out to be "bad").  I don't think it is a simple matter of your SISTER being so desperate to create her own identity as much as not having her unique needs and desires acknowledged and being met by your parents.  I think parents who are sensitive enough to be aware of early signs of sibling frustration can help the children find constructive ways of getting their needs met BEFORE they find their own ways of being seen as different, unique and valued for their differences.  I think that lessens the need to act out. 

 

Of the top of my head, I'm thinking of one particularly thorny issue for me growing up - unfair distribution of family resources and attention.

 

My oldest wasn't intellectually gifted, but she was definitely athletic.  That was apparently important enough for my mother to meet her need.  My mother encouraged her to do gymnastics and swimming and seemed to make a very big deal of these things.  She promised me art classes, then never delivered and it was a disappointment to me.  That would have gone a long way to show me that I was important and my interests mattered too.

 

And yeah, it was ME who was (and still is) always in my head, still incessantly trying to meet my needs for stimulation.  Thanks for noticing.  :)  I'll see if my writing blog is in my profile if you are interested in seeing what craziness is in it.

 


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