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Captain's blog

Worrying, Over-analysis, and Parenting your Gifted Child

Posted by Captain's blog on September 15, 2012 at 2:00 PM

There's a big difference between doing the right thing for your child and saying the right thing about your child in public. People prefer people who say the right things.

At the library crafts and kids lunch the other day I showed my son how to open the milk carton, saying, "Let me show you how. You're going to have to know how to do this in a few months." All the while I was worrying that the grandmother across from me might think I'm a helichopter mom for not letting my son learn that at school.

In the children's section of the library I wanted to preview Sir Cumference and the Dragons of Pi which my son is not ready for yet. While browsing through the math section, I found the Math Monster Series by Weekly Reader which is math fiction written for the kinder through second grade crowd. I was so excited I immediately told the librarian, "I found math fiction at the early reader level." At that point I realized that it sounded like I was bragging that my son is an early reader, when that wasn't my intention at all. What i thought I was saying was, "Look! There are living math books written at the early elementary reading level!!!"

I wouldn't have had these doubtful thoughts about how I come across, If I had never read parenting and educational forums and learned that parents of gifted children are often judged for simply being honest about their child's abilities. It might be an odd manifestion of imposter syndrome, but I worry about being the grown up version of "nobody likes a know-it-all". I feel like I know what my kids need, at least what's within my means to offer them. But if I lose myself 110% into overanalyzing every trivial bit of my parenting experience, then I'll find a million wrong ways to be a mother. It's really hard to make the worst decisions with the best intentions, so why do mothers like me worry too much?

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