Here are 10 things I’ve learned since becoming the mother of a pile of gifted kids!
1. All gifted kids are not created equal.
2. Just because your kid is gifted does not mean they will succeed academically. Or that they will give a shit about succeeding.
3. Just because your kid is gifted does not mean they will fail academically. But it might mean that they obsess over getting their answers absolutely right.
4. Some gifted kids are rule followers (these are the ones who often do OK at school). Some gifted kids are rule breakers.
5. Just because a kid is gifted and capable of discussing advanced concepts does not mean that they are emotionally mature enough to deal with the concepts in practice.
6. When a gifted kid takes a long time to make a decision, it’s not because they’re trying to annoy you or not focusing. Sometimes, it’s because they are considering not just the immediate decision, but the knock-on effect for the universe and will this cause the end of life as we know it?
7. Gifted kids are all intense. Even the quiet well-managed ones – those ones just internalise more. Gifted kids are challenging, wonderful, amazing, outstanding and often downright frustrating.
8. A gifted kid can be perfectly happy at an ordinary school. But they can be ecstatic, passionate and inspired when they get to go to a school for gifted kids.
9. Just because they’re gifted does not mean they should be entitled to special treatment; it does not make them better than anyone else and it certainly does not mean that they can treat anyone in their lives as worthless.
10. And the top thing I’ve learned since becoming the parent of gifted children? No matter how gifted, how much they succeed academically or how many imaginary universes they save, destroy or build, they are still just children. I want them to be happy, compassionate, contributing members of society. But most of all, I want them to be happy.