A few questions on parenting my gifted DD - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 4 Old 01-28-2013, 06:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My DD is 5 and gifted as well as special needs. She has dyspraxia and spent her toddler years dealing with gross and fine motor delays. Dyspraxia also comes with executive function, learning disabilities and emotional issues as well as overlaps with ADD.

 

We haven't yet sorted out how much of the cognitive stuff she's going to be dealing with, although dyslexia and dyscalculia don't seem to be an issue so far. However, she has a lot of anxiety and we're going to be starting therapy soon for her as my understanding with dyspraxia is that the anxiety becomes depression at puberty.

 

She's also gifted and recently has shared that she hides it so she'd not different. She is purposely messing up to fit in. Have any of you dealt with this?

 

I left it at it was always okay to be smart with us and that everyone is smart in different ways. I didn't pressure her to do anything differently with her peers. She's still in Pre-K (late bday). I did tell her teacher though.

 

Any thoughts on this? My hope is once she's in school she'll be grouped with other kids like her which should decrease her need to hide in order to fit in.


Happy Momma to DD (almost 3) Fall Coleslaw -- Simple Italian Stuffed Peppers -- - Fall Toddler Activities.- We Made a Play Kitchen Selling gently used books on all topics here.
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#2 of 4 Old 01-28-2013, 09:14 AM
 
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I think it's important to recognize that almost everyone does this to some degree.... at least everyone you could probably claim to like. Kind people want others to feel comfortable and there are times where it's inappropriate and unimportant to be "the best." When you talk to your DD, acknowledge this. Assure her that we all do this whether it's a friend with a new skill you already mastered but they are excited to show off or some helpful person on the street giving you advice on something you already know. Then talk to her about the difference between making others comfortable and hurting herself.

 

My eldest had unusually strong fine motors and was very advanced at writing and drawing. In preschool, she often used her left hand (she's a righty) because she didn't like how her classmates got sad when they compared their work to hers. It didn't hurt her. In fact, she sort of liked the challenge. She started kindergarten with a bang... 2 to 5 grade levels ahead all around. Her peers flipped out and she tried to go into hiding but it made her miserable. In that case, she was hurting herself and she had to stop. That was the end of the dumbing down. She is still a kind person. She recognizes that she can be very intense. She will back off when paired with someone she can see is insecure and not as skilled but she focuses more on bringing them up than pulling herself down now. At 15, I'm quite proud of how she handles it all. My DS hasn't had this issue as he has some built in weaknesses. It's not a big deal to be the best reader in class if you are also the slowest boy at recess lol. DD was just good at everything when she was young (and that does change as they start to focus their energies on high interest areas and stop developing other skills... for example, as strong an artist as DD was at 5, at 15, she's average and kids who kept focus on developing art skills have greatly surpassed her.) 

 

So, continue to talk to her. Help her recognize the differences between "trying to fit in" and "putting other people at ease." Since she's unhappy right now, sounds like she's trying to fit in. Help her brainstorm ways she can boost her peers without pulling herself down.


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#3 of 4 Old 01-28-2013, 10:57 AM
 
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Originally Posted by whatsnextmom View Post

I think it's important to recognize that almost everyone does this to some degree.... at least everyone you could probably claim to like. Kind people want others to feel comfortable and there are times where it's inappropriate and unimportant to be "the best." When you talk to your DD, acknowledge this. Assure her that we all do this whether it's a friend with a new skill you already mastered but they are excited to show off or some helpful person on the street giving you advice on something you already know. Then talk to her about the difference between making others comfortable and hurting herself.

 

My eldest had unusually strong fine motors and was very advanced at writing and drawing. In preschool, she often used her left hand (she's a righty) because she didn't like how her classmates got sad when they compared their work to hers. It didn't hurt her. In fact, she sort of liked the challenge. She started kindergarten with a bang... 2 to 5 grade levels ahead all around. Her peers flipped out and she tried to go into hiding but it made her miserable. In that case, she was hurting herself and she had to stop. That was the end of the dumbing down. She is still a kind person. She recognizes that she can be very intense. She will back off when paired with someone she can see is insecure and not as skilled but she focuses more on bringing them up than pulling herself down now. At 15, I'm quite proud of how she handles it all. My DS hasn't had this issue as he has some built in weaknesses. It's not a big deal to be the best reader in class if you are also the slowest boy at recess lol. DD was just good at everything when she was young (and that does change as they start to focus their energies on high interest areas and stop developing other skills... for example, as strong an artist as DD was at 5, at 15, she's average and kids who kept focus on developing art skills have greatly surpassed her.) 

 

So, continue to talk to her. Help her recognize the differences between "trying to fit in" and "putting other people at ease." Since she's unhappy right now, sounds like she's trying to fit in. Help her brainstorm ways she can boost her peers without pulling herself down.

 

 

Excellent advice.

 

I have two 7 year olds and we constantly talk about that different people are good at different things and that is OK. They both have some special needs, so it really rings true to them. They know what they are strong in and we encourage them to be proud of what they are good at. They also know their limitations and work hard to improve.

 

We also stress--- keep learning. It is not the grade that is important. If you get 100 % on the pretest, cool- but what do you learn now (this is why they get challenge spelling words since they were acing the pretests. We explained the reasoning why the different words as they needed to learn...they already knew what others are learning. So learn something different in order to KEEP learning).....learning is the important part! 

 

PreK was probably the MOST awkward time since both my DDs were reading fluently and other kids were not - they knew it, other kids knew it, and parents commented. They helped pass out papers and such, but I did not allow them to be singled out to read to peers in a formal arrangement. Since it was a playbased PreK-- it worked out well. They also got to work on different reading projects for preliteracy activities, it was dont in a non-dramatic way by their very fantastic teacher.

 

We also celebrate differences so we have had a few things here and there of 'blending in', but for the most part they enjoy being themselves! They are both fairly quirky, but friendly kiddos!

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#4 of 4 Old 01-28-2013, 11:22 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Okay, ladies thank you for your input. It's good to know I'm on the right track. This stuff is a lot more nuanced than I ever imagined especially with the special needs aspect to it.

V
 


Happy Momma to DD (almost 3) Fall Coleslaw -- Simple Italian Stuffed Peppers -- - Fall Toddler Activities.- We Made a Play Kitchen Selling gently used books on all topics here.
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