PREVIOUS: Multiple Intellig. #3e
SITE: “Characteristics & Behaviors of the Gifted” (excellent)
See ACRONYM page or abbrev.
BOOK: “The Drama of the Gifted Child”~ Alice Miller (Comments)
Parents know that their children are different from each other – but not all are aware of it consciously. We can tell this by how differently they treat each child – because of birth order, gender, inborn characteristics, & the type most like each of the parents.
Healthy: In reasonably functional homes parents notice & respond appropriately of the variations in their children’s personalities. While trying to be fair & balances, they form their relationships & type of guidance based on what’s best suited to each child’s style.
Unhealthy: Damaged parents don’t even try to be fair or balanced with their various children. Instead they ONLY use those existing differences in the service of the family dis-ease & their own sick personal needs – especially the very smart & perceptive children, who are:
a. either scapegoated in order to dis-empower them because their sensitivity & intelligence is a threat to maintaining the abusive structure, & so are systematically destroyed
b. or their strength & cleverness is used to take care of everyone else, while the child’s needs are neglected & negated. OR both.
ACoAs: Even though we are in fact quite smart – to have figured out how to survive so much chaos & cruelty – we don’t know who we are inside. So it’s not surprising that we seem oblivious to fundamental differences in the personalities of people we meet or live with. We act as if they are all the same – but more specifically – the same as us (symbiosis). This is the crux of our emotional & psychological blindness: Our WIC narcissistically wants everyone to be a carbon copy of ourselves, as if that would validate us & give us permission to be ourselves. It’s the only way it thinks it can be safe.
▶︎ Studying the various Styles of children & adults (in the previous 7 posts) allows us to distinguish ourselves from others, & be better able to interact with with them based on who they are.
RECOVERY: But first we need to find our who we truly are (via our inventories, plus mirroring & validation from others) to get comfortable with ourselves, so that it’s OK to see who other people are, without it threatening us. Another irony – the more we can do that the safer we actually feel!
REVIEW: As listed in many other posts – there are a number of ways to find out who we are, such as: Al-anon, Dream Interpretation, Enneagram, Journaling, Myers-Briggs Inventory, MMPI, Multiple Intelligences, Personality tests, Prayer & Meditation, Psychotherapy, Numerology & Astrology, 2-handed Inner Child dialogues, Trauma Release body work…..
For ACoAs – all these tools are needed in various combinations in oder to form a rounded picture of our Inner Self, since we are complex beings and because our upbringing gave us a very distorted view of ourselves.
Re. very bright children – the following categories are conclusions drawn from many year of observation by George Betts & Maureen Neihart (Davidson Institute for Talent Development), based on Howard Gadner’s 1983 proposed Multiple Intelligences.
Re. this List: As with other kinds of descriptions, a child may be a combination of 2 or more, & their type may change or be modified with time as they grow & develop. Healthy parents will want to stay aware of their gifted child’s progress, to keep up with changes in needed help & guidance.
NOTE: Some Gifted Children have hidden learning disabilities that often go undiscovered, because fearing ridicule & the ignorance of others, their cleverness allows G&Ts to compensate for problems in their early years. Untreated, eventually it becomes harder & harder for them to excel, which can lead to behavior problems, depression & giving up. (MORE…..)
CATEGORIES of ‘Gifted & Talented’ (G&T)
Type I: The Successful – 90%
• In school they are identified as gifted – being perfectionists, & academically high achievers. They are the kids who conform to the rules, behave appropriately, get good grades & score high on IQ tests. They’ve learned the system – keen to earn approval from parents, educators & other adults, & are usually well liked and included in social groups.
• At home gifted children need independence, freedom of choice, time for personal interests, and opportunity for risk-taking experiences.
• However, if they’re in an ‘average’ environment, gradually some Type Is can become bored, & use the system to get by with as little effort as possible. They’ll go through the motions & end up coasting or under-achieving in both grade school & college.
Type II: The Challenging
• Many school systems fail to identify them as gifted, even tho they are ‘divergently gifted’ (multi-talented), therefore highly creative. But they are also non-conformists, which doesn’t go over well in school, & can come across as obstinate, tactless, or sarcastic
• Not being ‘seen’, they can become rebellious – questioning authority & the system, challenging teachers in class. They’re impatient, too direct & competitive, which often leads to conflict. Frustrated because school doesn’t acknowledge their natural talents & acquired skills, Type IIs struggle with low self-esteem
• At home they need acceptance, understanding & advocacy from parents. Also family activities & examples of positive behavior
• Socially, some may find themselves excluded as ‘weird’, while others will earn peer approval & friendship because of their creativity & sense of humor
NEXT: Gifted Children (Part 2)