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    #223818 - 10/13/15 10:17 PM Re: Gifted adults-what did your parents do right/wrong [Re: sweetpeas]
    aquinas Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/02/12
    Posts: 2480
    I would give my parents a low-90s score on their approach to raising me. I hope I can come close to them in my parenting DS.

    Right:

    - Unconditional love in a stable and close-knit family
    - Lots of one-on-one attention and family time spent pursuing interests together
    - Modelling self-respect and confidence as a woman (my mother), and chivalrous masculinity (my father)
    - Giving me space to learn to be alone happily, and to appreciate myself without the need to be defined by others
    - Modelling high achievement and setting high personal standards
    - Making financial and personal sacrifices to send me to a specialized school, and ensuring that one parent was always at home during my early years and school holidays
    - Accepting some grade skips and SSA
    - Joyfully and sincerely seeking out my opinions and discussing current affairs and scientific developments from an early age
    - In my father's case, sincerely trying to avoid the harshly critical and perfectionistic habits of his own abusive father (and, IMO, making strides relative to his father)
    - In my mother's case, fostering intrinsic motivation for good organizational habits in high school (noteworthy because she has always lamented her lack of study skills, despite high achievement)
    - Always trusting and believing my word, and fostering a family culture where open communication about sensitive topics was encouraged
    - Being unrelenting, yet tactful, advocates in the face of poor educators
    - My mother: modelling humility and patience with difficult personalities (I.e. myself and my father!)
    - My father: gentleness and commiseration with respect to sensory sensitivities
    - Giving me carte blanche to study in any field, without any perceived pressure in any direction
    - Respecting my wish to not engage in many of my hobbies at competitive levels. I do things because I like them; I am not a performer.
    - Being proud of me for being who I am.
    - Having the courage to be authoritative parents, enforcing reasonable boundaries, and not being caught up in the mania of being your child's friend at the expense of being a parent

    Wrong:

    I firmly believe that weaknesses are strengths that manifest themselves maladaptively. As a matter of degree, I'd weight the "wrongs" as being much less important than the much more abundant "rights", where the same habits were used positively.

    - Father: projecting his own insecurity of never being "good enough" to his father onto me. Not so subtly competing with me, and needing to compare any achievement of mine to an experience of his.

    - Father: Explicitly teaching me that (I quote), "If you're smart, you don't have to work hard." He thought it was marvellous that I could bring home 100s with zero effort and denigrated anyone who had to work at all. It was a strange message, because he had clearly worked hard in his life to achieve what he had, and his actions were otherwise so positive.

    Wow, did that ever cause problems in my first semester of university, when I was underage, enrolled as a second/third year student, living away from home for the first time, and full of hubris. Talk about a moment of reckoning. It took a semester for me to learn that I did need to do some work to get the grades I was used to, and I spent a year believing I was a moron for having to work. It was the first time I had ever needed to do anything other than show up and do the work cold. I met someone who was objectively FAR smarter than me in my field (as in, tenure-track-at-24, extreme PG, light years ahead of me) and I'm now ashamed to say that my first reaction upon meeting him was anger and resentment. I missed out on friendship and learning opportunities with him because I was too petulant and jealous of what I wasn't. How sad! I won't make that mistake again!

    - Father: Being happy to debate and discuss ideas only so long as my opinions mirror his. Perceiving differences of opinion as a rejection of him. Being over-committed to consistency over truth in his stated opinions.

    - Father: Bragging about me shamelessly to others in my presence, including showing people my report cards (ugh!), and constantly telling me I was better than others for being smart. (ugh!)

    - Parents: Not accepting all acceleration offered by the school. Given reason: social adjustment. Suspected real reason: I would have been accelerated more than my father had been as a child. He was a radical accelerant, and that was an important part of his self-identity.

    - Father: Complaining bitterly and sulking anytime I didn't come in first place. I really didn't care, but he felt slighted on my behalf somehow.
    _________________________
    What is to give light must endure burning.

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    #223830 - 10/14/15 06:22 AM Re: Gifted adults-what did your parents do right/wrong [Re: aquinas]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4688
    Originally Posted By: aquinas
    Father: Explicitly teaching me that (I quote), "If you're smart, you don't have to work hard." He thought it was marvellous that I could bring home 100s with zero effort and denigrated anyone who had to work at all. It was a strange message, because he had clearly worked hard in his life to achieve what he had, and his actions were otherwise so positive.

    Wow, did that ever cause problems in my first semester of university, when I was underage, enrolled as a second/third year student, living away from home for the first time, and full of hubris. Talk about a moment of reckoning. It took a semester for me to learn that I did need to do some work to get the grades I was used to, and I spent a year believing I was a moron for having to work. It was the first time I had ever needed to do anything other than show up and do the work cold. I met someone who was objectively FAR smarter than me in my field (as in, tenure-track-at-24, extreme PG, light years ahead of me) and I'm now ashamed to say that my first reaction upon meeting him was anger and resentment. I missed out on friendship and learning opportunities with him because I was too petulant and jealous of what I wasn't. How sad! I won't make that mistake again!
    Some may say the view on effort and negative response to the success of others may show the downside of a "fixed" mindset. Kudos on your reflections & overcoming this. smile

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    #223854 - 10/14/15 12:12 PM Re: Gifted adults-what did your parents do right/wrong [Re: indigo]
    aquinas Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/02/12
    Posts: 2480
    Originally Posted By: indigo
    Originally Posted By: aquinas
    Father: Explicitly teaching me that (I quote), "If you're smart, you don't have to work hard." He thought it was marvellous that I could bring home 100s with zero effort and denigrated anyone who had to work at all. It was a strange message, because he had clearly worked hard in his life to achieve what he had, and his actions were otherwise so positive.

    Wow, did that ever cause problems in my first semester of university, when I was underage, enrolled as a second/third year student, living away from home for the first time, and full of hubris. Talk about a moment of reckoning. It took a semester for me to learn that I did need to do some work to get the grades I was used to, and I spent a year believing I was a moron for having to work. It was the first time I had ever needed to do anything other than show up and do the work cold. I met someone who was objectively FAR smarter than me in my field (as in, tenure-track-at-24, extreme PG, light years ahead of me) and I'm now ashamed to say that my first reaction upon meeting him was anger and resentment. I missed out on friendship and learning opportunities with him because I was too petulant and jealous of what I wasn't. How sad! I won't make that mistake again!
    Some may say the view on effort and negative response to the success of others may show the downside of a "fixed" mindset. Kudos on your reflections & overcoming this. smile


    Yes, perfectionism and fixed mindsets are insidious habits. Thankfully, life is full of learning opportunities and occasions to correct course when experience shows you that better choices exist.
    _________________________
    What is to give light must endure burning.

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    #223865 - 10/14/15 02:16 PM Re: Gifted adults-what did your parents do right/wrong [Re: sweetpeas]
    Mahagogo5 Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/11/12
    Posts: 517
    ugh I started typing and it all got a bit grim. I would say though despite doing everything contrary to current wisdom on raising gifted kids, it really would have only taken one person telling me I had potential to make a difference.

    If nothing else, be that voice.

    Thought I'd a little more after reading some of there others.

    Right: pushed very heavily into girl guiding which was great for trying lots of things and like minded friends. Very involved in school and supported my learning through tutors in subjects I was failing (not doing well).

    Wrong: mental illness (seems to be a theme on this thread) just basic working class lack of vision. After I got into university I took a major which I loved but I had no one to steer me in the direction of making the most of it. My parents had pretty much decided university was for people who thought they were better than everyone else. Of course they would tell everyone they met about their genius daughter in varsity wink

    I was very unsophisticated and basically had no idea about things like honours degrees etc until I was well into the system and by then my self esteem was so low I had gone down the bad boyfriend, drugs route that we all stress will happen if we don't bump up that self worth.


    Edited by Mahagogo5 (10/14/15 02:34 PM)

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    #223877 - 10/14/15 04:39 PM Re: Gifted adults-what did your parents do right/wrong [Re: sweetpeas]
    AvoCado Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/11/13
    Posts: 202
    I think the information age has a lot to do with (what we perceive as, anyway!) much improved parenting these days. Anyone with even the vaguest slightest interest in any aspect of their kids can find this forum or thousands like it and get all the advice, debate, theory, encouragement or criticism they could ever need and then some.
    Yesterday alone we googled the appropriateness of Great Expectations for DD8 who really wants to get into Dickens (maybe we'll start with Xmas Carol), how a Magic 8 Ball works, and double-checked something about the curriculum of a nearby private school. This morning we downloaded an article from The Atlantic for her. In the 70s - pffft. You'd get Dr Spock out of the library and that would be it. The only self-improvement book I ever remember my mother having was Phyllis Diller!


    Edited by AvoCado (10/14/15 04:42 PM)
    Edit Reason: Dr … Mr … same thing ...

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    #223884 - 10/14/15 05:54 PM Re: Gifted adults-what did your parents do right/wrong [Re: AvoCado]
    Mahagogo5 Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/11/12
    Posts: 517
    Originally Posted By: AvoCado
    I think the information age has a lot to do with (what we perceive as, anyway!) much improved parenting these days. Anyone with even the vaguest slightest interest in any aspect of their kids can find this forum or thousands like it and get all the advice, debate, theory, encouragement or criticism they could ever need and then some.
    Yesterday alone we googled the appropriateness of Great Expectations for DD8 who really wants to get into Dickens (maybe we'll start with Xmas Carol), how a Magic 8 Ball works, and double-checked something about the curriculum of a nearby private school. This morning we downloaded an article from The Atlantic for her. In the 70s - pffft. You'd get Dr Spock out of the library and that would be it. The only self-improvement book I ever remember my mother having was Phyllis Diller!


    Very true - I know my mum did HER best. BTW I turned out brilliant - just not employed brilliantly.

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    #223889 - 10/14/15 07:10 PM Re: Gifted adults-what did your parents do right/wrong [Re: AvoCado]
    aeh Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 3884
    Side note: She might do better with GE than you think. I read Great Expectations at age 9, and loved it. It was my first Dickens. Followed by A Tale of Two Cities. (Which maybe would have been better after studying the French Revolution.) And my friend a few months older was obsessed with Les Miz.
    _________________________
    ...pronounced like the long vowel and first letter of the alphabet...

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    #223897 - 10/14/15 11:50 PM Re: Gifted adults-what did your parents do right/wrong [Re: sweetpeas]
    Tigerle Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/29/14
    Posts: 602
    Loc: Europe
    Hmm. Always felt the most straightforward Dickens was David Copperfield. Except for the Steerforth (?) side plot, of course. Everything else I felt had so much jumping back and forth and needed so much historical nderstanding...
    I'm actually wondering whether it might make sense to have a child watch a mainstream movie or tv adaptation firsts, to sort of get them in the the 19th century mood and help them keep track of the plot. Totally against conventional wisdom, I know. Depends a lot of just how much historical fiction the child has read already. Has she maxed out on historical (ie actually written over a hundred years ago) children's fiction?


    Edited by Tigerle (10/14/15 11:51 PM)

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    #223898 - 10/14/15 11:52 PM Re: Gifted adults-what did your parents do right/wrong [Re: sweetpeas]
    Tigerle Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/29/14
    Posts: 602
    Loc: Europe
    Sorry for the OT...

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    #223900 - 10/15/15 01:24 AM Re: Gifted adults-what did your parents do right/wrong [Re: sweetpeas]
    SynapticStorm Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 04/12/13
    Posts: 24
    Loc: California (SF Bay Area)
    Right:

    * My mother loved me unconditionally
    * My mother engaged me in open-ended conversation to explore my interests and desires
    * My mother treated me as a genius and encouraged me to pursue my passions
    * My father challenged me to pursue moderation in all things
    * My father explained the value of being typical over exceptional

    Wrong:

    * I was forced to attend public school and had to suffer through boredom and peer abuse for many years
    * My teachers and school administrators prevented me from attending college at an early age (12-13) because they felt it would damage my social skills
    * When I discovered my passion (computer programming and engineering), my father saw it as an obsession and removed it from my life in an attempt to steer me towards more typical interests
    _________________________
    DS10 (DYS, homeschooled)
    DD8 (DYS, homeschooled)

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