[Looking back to January 2015]
Tomorrow, my boy heads off to school. It’s going to be a big one. Not just because it’s the ‘big, first day’, but because he is going to skip prep and head straight into grade 1….
It has been a journey I could never have prepared for but has taught me more than I could ever have hoped for. I encourage you to read my post if you have a bright and sensitive one.
“She thinks her child is gifted!!”
Here’s what you should know..
- Being bright and sensitive pervades every aspect of life. It is an exhausting path to parent one (& usually more!) of these children. The path continues onto adulthood too!
- Sleep can be a real issue for these kids. Many reasons, from being more aware of their surroundings to reactions to certain foods, even in breast milk. Many who end up in ‘sleep school’ are bright and sensitive.
- You and your little sensitive one will struggle with some or all of the following : bath time, haircuts, brushing teeth, coping with different textures in food (or flavours, appearance, temperatures), loud sounds, clothing tags, the feel of grass/sand/wet clothes, the list goes on…
- Besides sensations, your child is much more likely to be sensitive to particular foods, chemicals, emotions and also what is going on around them.
- You may need to remove particular foods and chemicals to improve your child’s health (such as eczema, ‘ADHD’, immunity, brain fog and even Asperger’s).
- Your child will most likely have one or more of the following ‘overexcitabilities’:
- emotional (intense feelings, extremes of emotions, empathy)
- imaginational (using creativity and imagination to escape boredom)
- psychomotor (love of movement, boundless energy, rapid speech
- sensual (derives extreme pleasure from music, language, art and their senses)
- intellectual (keen observer, very curious, active mind)
- Your child will reach some or many milestones quite early. From smiling to walking to talking in sentences to riding a bike.
- Mother’s groups can be tricky when others don’t really want to marvel over the amazing things your child has done, even when you try to be interested in the other little ones. Getting support from those who understand is a relief.
- Your child will potentially out-tantrum all of their friends. This can be linked to their sensitive yet persistent nature!
- Despite other parents saying ‘we have so many toys’, you may burn through toys, trying to keep up with your little one’s need to entertain their brain. Or you may have the very social child whose interactions are beyond their years.
- People might say ‘they’ve been here before’ or they appear to be an adult stuck in a little one’s body.
- It is quite likely your child will appear ‘ADHD’. Again, it may be linked to their very active (but capable) brain…or brain inflammation due to food or chemical sensitivities.
- Sometimes they do not fit in with the norm and can appear to be on the autistic spectrum.
- Family, friends and educational staff may find it difficult to understand how one minute your child can be doing something very clever, but the next minute, getting up to extreme mischief, having a complete meltdown or having total lack of motivation. ‘Asynchronicity’ is the uneven development across social-emotional, physical and intellectual skills which can leave people unsure of what to make of this child.
- Your child may suffer boredom… Advocating for your child will be a big one. Your child may be underestimated…a lot. Advocating for your child will be a big one.
- These children do not respond well to authority! Giving them the ‘why’ works well.
- Being responsive to these ‘square peg’ children will help your child feel understood and prosper.
- The word ‘gifted’ is sure to be one of the most controversial words you ever say!
- All of this is genetic. Which side of the family (or both?) has it come from? Siblings will fall no further than 13 IQ points and are highly likely to be sensitive. Possibly in different ways.
- There are more bright and sensitive children out there than most people realise. Would your child be one of them?
In exhausting times and an amazing journey,
This sounds a lot like my 6 year old. Smart…so smart. Knew and recognised his abc, 1-20 at 18 months, could spell words at 3, reading at 4 and so on. But oh so sensitive. Hair washing, hair cuts used to be such a horrible time. Now the teeth are falling out he sometimes breaks down crying because is is worried about them coming out. He does so well in school then randomly the teacher will speak to me about him being disruptive and not sitting down when everyone else is or he doesn’t put his hand up for the day. Then the next day he is back to normal. I definitely feel you post relates to my child so well.
Are there ways to “help” him/embrace is personality?
Hi Lauren. APOLOGIES for missing your comment. Wow it is always so nice to hear there are other parents out there going down the same path. Have you taken a look at Dabrowski’s Overexcitabilities? Or read the book Raising your spirited child? They at least give you good insight for what it’s like for them and inspire you to advocate strongly.
Otherwise, for my children, I am always pointing out their strong sides and talking to them about the areas their brain may not be as strong in (it can’t do it all). I am very big on encouraging my son to remain sensitive and not to feel ashamed with the ‘rough’ boys around him. They are exactly right as they are!
Have you joined a gifted children’s support group? There is one on Facebook? x
Oh, I can relate to so many elements on this list. Was nice to read this and know I’m not alone on this journey. I wish I had met more people like you Heidi when S. was a baby and I was struggling with how much faster he learned everything than the other kids his age. Thank you for writing this and sharing this. 🙂
Oh yes!! we really just missed eachother by a bit of time and distance… a weird thing to think about really! It is so great to have connected now though Yolanda 😀