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Another "Might my child be gifted?" question


Snowfall
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So I've been pretty consistently saying DD isn't gifted for quite a while, but now I'm starting to wonder if perhaps I just didn't notice, since she's not accelerated in reading or math. We started her in therapy for some behavioral issues a couple months ago, and her therapist says she is advanced verbally (we thought she was, but weren't sure) and that perhaps some of our issues have to do with her judgment and impulse control lagging behind her intellect.

 

I know I was considered highly gifted as a child and that these things can run in families, so should I have her tested? It's hard for me to be objective about this, because she's my kid and obviously I think she's smart, so I might be biased. On the other hand, if she is gifted, it's not in the ways I was, so it's hard for me to see that she might be gifted, kwim?

 

It seems like it might not be important to know, since we're homeschooling anyway. Then again, it seems like it might help us in understanding her better to know if she is. We certainly have our issues. So worthwhile or worthless in your opinions?

 

Edit: And I've read multiple websites on the qualities of gifted children. She meets many of them: intensity, difficulty relating to same age peers, curiosity, asynchronous development (advanced verbal skills, science understanding, but not math or reading skills), ability to focus for long periods on topics of interest, plus some others.

Edited by Snowfall
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I think it is important to know if you think you might be dealing with giftedness along with LDs or other issues, particularly if you think the issues are getting in the way of the giftedness. But be aware that sometimes the second exceptionality can get in the way of IQ results. This is what happened with my son, especially the first time he was tested. He has turned out to be HG with LDs, but the first time he was tested his IQ subtest scores came out average to below average.

Edited by EKS
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Getting tested just to say your child is gifted is one thing I don't like, HOWEVER, getting your child tested, not caring about the IQ score itself, just to get a better understanding of how your child thinks and learns (which I think is what you're saying), is something I think everyone should look into if they can afford it. Testing is expensive, and depending on how many tests you need, it can be very expensive.

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I definitely don't care to do it just to brag about her IQ scores, since I'm not even sure they'd be anything outside the norm anyway. :) I'm starting to suspect that she may be gifted and it may have something to do with the problem behaviors, based in part on the suggestion of the therapist that this may be the case. I can afford the testing. I guess I'm just trying to figure out if it matters - if it will really make a difference in the way we should deal with her behavior. If it won't, then I guess there's no reason to know. If it will, then I definitely want to know.

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What would you do differently with your child if you had a test result? Which aspects of your parenting and your relationship are going to change?

 

My kids were tested in public school - I had not need for the test. I have lived with them and observed them all those years and know them. I fail to see how a two hour test in some psychologist's office can give us magically more information than careful observation over many years.

 

Btw, both my kids have virtually identical IQs and profiles - yet are completely different personalities, have different learning styles, need different schooling. No test could have given me this information.

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I think that if you're just looking at "is she gifted" then I don't know if testing will matter much. But it did help for our situation. We were looking at our boys asynchronous development and thinking some learning delays were going on. Not really looking at what was advanced, but rather what was behind.

 

We were also looking at behavior issues. And yes, I think that how you deal with a child's bad behaviors does depend on why they are having them. For example, we learned that the reason our second son was always jumping off furniture and running headlong into walls was due to Sensory Processing Disorder. So our approach to dealing with this behavior changed because of the knowledge we gained from the testing (actually further testing after the IQ testing).

 

So schooling wise... I'm guessing that it won't be worth much, but it may be worth it in the long run if there are underlying issues going on. IQ testing is a good place to begin, if you can afford it.

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What would you do differently with your child if you had a test result? Which aspects of your parenting and your relationship are going to change?

 

I don't know! If I knew, I wouldn't have to ask. All I know is that, based on what I've recently read about gifted personality traits, I could have been saved a lot of drama in my childhood if someone had realized that maybe some of my quirks were normal behaviors for gifted children, rather than me trying to be oppositional, defiant, or just plain annoying, which is how I was treated by my parents. I was given a diagnosis of Oppositional Defiant Disorder, which I to this day do not believe was EVER true. I was a good kid, got good grades (except for one report card in 6th grade, at which point I was just TIRED of everything), and rarely got into any trouble at school or at home. My parents just didn't get me.

 

Now we're having problems with my daughter, and some of them seem woefully similar to the problems my parents had with me. If there is a certain way they ought to be handled for gifted kids, if it's different than for other kids, then I need to know. If the way she responds to the things we say differs based on this one thing, then it's important. If you don't have any major discipline or personality issues with your kids, then I wouldn't expect you to understand. It's very easy to say that parents should always automatically know the best way to deal with their children, when what you've done has always worked for you, but please don't be dismissive or assume it's an issue of poor parenting when others are struggling.

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(ETA: Yes on testing that is)

 

My standard is if you think you're missing something, that's the perfect reason to have a professional evaluation.

 

We had DS tested when we weren't sure whether his "quirks" represented Issues (particularly if he was compensating for learning disabilities) or if they were just quirks.

 

I have no regrets about testing - of course I know more about DS than just scores, but the testing complements what I know from our day to day work very nicely. Also, it's nice to know a disinterested party provided that evaluation and it's not just my own opinion.

Edited by KAR120C
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I don't know! If I knew, I wouldn't have to ask. All I know is that, based on what I've recently read about gifted personality traits, I could have been saved a lot of drama in my childhood if someone had realized that maybe some of my quirks were normal behaviors for gifted children, rather than me trying to be oppositional, defiant, or just plain annoying, which is how I was treated by my parents. I was given a diagnosis of Oppositional Defiant Disorder, which I to this day do not believe was EVER true. I was a good kid, got good grades (except for one report card in 6th grade, at which point I was just TIRED of everything), and rarely got into any trouble at school or at home. My parents just didn't get me.

 

Now we're having problems with my daughter, and some of them seem woefully similar to the problems my parents had with me. If there is a certain way they ought to be handled for gifted kids, if it's different than for other kids, then I need to know. If the way she responds to the things we say differs based on this one thing, then it's important. If you don't have any major discipline or personality issues with your kids, then I wouldn't expect you to understand. It's very easy to say that parents should always automatically know the best way to deal with their children, when what you've done has always worked for you, but please don't be dismissive or assume it's an issue of poor parenting when others are struggling.

 

I didn't see it as being dismissive, but a real question. What *would* you do differently if she were gifted, versus if she were not?

 

It's sort of like when I'm thinking about going to the doctor - what do I want out of the visit? Antibiotics? Assurance that it's nothing serious? If it's the latter, then is it really worth a co-pay to me to get official M.D. assurance that I'm going to live? Or can I make do with my own intuition that it's nothing serious? (And sometimes I *have* gone, usually with babies, explicitly for reassurance. But it's no fun to spend $20 on a basically pointless visit if all you could realistically get was reassurance, but you went in wanting something more, kwim?)

 

I mean, you've said that you are having problems, many of which are similar to problems you & your parents had. You've said that you strongly disagree with how your parents handled it. So you aren't going to go with their approach, no matter if your dd is gifted or not, right?

 

Is there any reason you can't research parenting gifted kids on your own, see if any of it resonates, and experiment? Or do you need official "permission", somehow, to let go of your family's (failed) approach and try something new? (I've seen lots of parents here say that - that somehow knowing how their dc were different, *officially*, was something they needed to be able to mentally shift gears and change their approach.)

 

I'm gifted, from a gifted family, with likely gifted kids - and personally I don't see how giftedness materially affects overall parenting philosophy, either as gifted parent or gifted child. The specific implementation, sure - but that is true of all kids. So, no, I don't think there are huge changes necessary in parenting just because of giftedness, though changes may be necessary because of who you & your spouse and your dd are. (Also, I'm not sure that testing will give you the specifics wrt parenting that you are looking for - you'll probably need to do more research into parenting gifted kids anyway. So if that is your main goal re: testing, you might as well skip straight to learning about gifted parenting, see how that helps first.)

 

ETA: Basically, you said your parents saw your quirks, due to your giftedness, as something to be (metaphorically or literally) beaten out of you - and you suffered for it. Now you see a similar dynamic starting b/w you & your dd, and you rightly don't want to go down the same road as your parents. Does it really *matter* whether your dd's quirks are due to her being gifted or not?

Edited by forty-two
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If there is a certain way they ought to be handled for gifted kids, if it's different than for other kids, then I need to know. If the way she responds to the things we say differs based on this one thing, then it's important. If you don't have any major discipline or personality issues with your kids, then I wouldn't expect you to understand. It's very easy to say that parents should always automatically know the best way to deal with their children, when what you've done has always worked for you, but please don't be dismissive or assume it's an issue of poor parenting when others are struggling.

 

I did not assume anything about your parenting.

I was trying to point out that even gifted children with the same level of giftedness can be extremely different personalities and that there is no one way to parent or deal with the problems of gifted children - because giftedness alone does neither causes the problem nor gives you a one-size-fits-all solution.

Knowing your child is gifted will not automatically tell you how to fix her behavior - because different gifted children have different problems and challenges and require different approaches.

 

I would like to add to this: if you suspect your DD's behavioral problems might be related to an above average IQ, you could just try to assume she is indeed gifted and implement whatever changes you think need to be done for gifted children . Then see if her behavior improves.

One thing that comes to my mind is being not challenged and bored - but this you can tweak easily since you are homeschooling and not required to follow an age appropriate curriculum. So if she behaves better when she is allowed to read 5th grade level books, you have a solution - without needing an number for her IQ.

Edited by regentrude
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But knowing for sure can give you the permission you need to stop second-guessing yourself and start down the path to solving the behavior issues and investigating possible learning disabilities.

 

If I didn't "know" (via IQ score) that my dd was gifted, we would never have discovered her dyslexia. I'm sure I would have used her symptoms as "proof" that she wasn't really gifted, just typical, and convinced myself that I was one of "those" mothers.

 

Before we had the testing I spent a lot of time waffling back and forth -- "She's really rather quck. No: I'm just her mother and I obviously oversestimate her. I can expect more; she can obviously get more out of this. No: Other parents tell me to stop pushing, so I must be expecting too much."

 

I certainly never would have given myself permission to investigate possible issues given that dd was reading at grade level. (Isn't that proof that she isn't gifted, but typical?)

 

I think that, if you can afford the testing, it can only give you more information and can only be helpful. (It can't hurt.) Why not -- just be sure to find someone who is experienced testing gifted kids. These kids can throw a monkey wrench in things when the adult is least expecting it and there are lots of stories out there about invalid results b/c of this.

 

It's not an easy decision to make. Good luck!

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I'll talk to the therapist when we go back next week. I was just asking here, since this forum is available right now. Instant gratification. :)

 

Regentrude, the part of your response that I felt was dismissive was not the quoted part. What I felt was dismissive was your suggestion that careful observation is all any parent needs to be able to determine what to DO with their children - how to parent them. When there are issues (learning, behavioral, interpersonal) sometimes it DOES help to have an evaluation done to determine the cause of those issues. I can't assume my kid is gifted. I don't know. And I don't know what I would do differently if I found out she was. I would read, read, read and get advice from her therapist and the parents of gifted children. Right now, I can't just say, "Hey, my kid may or may not be gifted, so how do I deal with her crippling perfectionism?" The cause of her perfectionism (among other things) very likely determines the way we need to handle it. Of course not all gifted children are the same or require the same approach. She has SPECIFIC issues we are dealing with, and their CAUSES matter. If one of those causes is giftedness, then it is relevant. Period.

 

I don't have time to research every possible cause for every behavioral issue, then do a trial implementation of every possible change we can make, one at a time. We are a military, homeschooling family with a baby. No friends nearby, no family nearby, no one to watch the baby while I spend hours and hours reading books on giftedness and every other possible cause for DD's issues, while juggling baby, homeschooling, housework, and everything else...with an uncooperative 6yo whose problem is not that her reading material is too easy. It's not that simple.

 

Forty-two, fortunately I don't parent at all how my parents did, so that's not an issue, but just doing things differently than them doesn't necessarily mean I'm doing the BEST things, kwim? And despite doing things differently, here I am with a daughter who has some of my same issues and I don't know what to do. Our dynamic is certainly different, but that doesn't mean there's no room for us (especially DH) to misunderstand her.

 

I will say that I think it's a bit odd that people who seek to find support at a board for gifted kids don't see the need for other people to determine whether their kids are gifted or not. If giftedness is important enough to warrant special forums, why is it irrelevant for other people to know if their kids are gifted? I'm somewhat baffled by that idea. And if you (general 'you') find your child's giftedness important enough to seek special support at a subforum for gifted children, why then insist that giftedness is really not important? Participating in a forum for gifted kids suggests you find it to have some sort of impact, or else why be here at all? At least this thread has helped me to explore my own feelings about the matter a bit more. Sometimes you just need a good discussion to suddenly realize exactly what you think you ought to do. :)

 

Zaichiki, that's exactly how I feel. You nailed it! I waffle between thinking, "How the heck did she figure THAT out? She's SO smart!" and "No, she's reading a Bob Book. She's average."

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I will say that I think it's a bit odd that people who seek to find support at a board for gifted kids don't see the need for other people to determine whether their kids are gifted or not. If giftedness is important enough to warrant special forums, why is it irrelevant for other people to know if their kids are gifted? I'm somewhat baffled by that idea. And if you (general 'you') find your child's giftedness important enough to seek special support at a subforum for gifted children, why then insist that giftedness is really not important? Participating in a forum for gifted kids suggests you find it to have some sort of impact, or else why be here at all? At least this thread has helped me to explore my own feelings about the matter a bit more. Sometimes you just need a good discussion to suddenly realize exactly what you think you ought to do. :)

 

 

Because it's not a gifted forum. It's an accelerated forum--working ahead of grade level regardless of giftedness level. Many families who post on here have never had IQ/giftedness tested and don't intend to unless there is pressing cause. I haven't tested mine. I wouldn't change what I'm doing with either of my dds if I did test them. I give them what they can handle & enjoy at their level, and try new things if what I guessed didn't work. (Within a month we will have 3 kids 5 & under including a baby, so I understand how it can feel overwhelming--but it is really one of, if not the, best way to find out what works.) The numbers don't really explain anything, IMO. It's a lot of trial and error to find out what works, even with professional testing to give you the IQ numbers. :) (I have been tested myself and the numbers didn't change anything for me except the ability to tease that I got one point higher than my brother.)

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I can't assume my kid is gifted. I don't know. And I don't know what I would do differently if I found out she was. I would read, read, read and get advice from her therapist and the parents of gifted children. Right now, I can't just say, "Hey, my kid may or may not be gifted, so how do I deal with her crippling perfectionism?" The cause of her perfectionism (among other things) very likely determines the way we need to handle it. Of course not all gifted children are the same or require the same approach. She has SPECIFIC issues we are dealing with, and their CAUSES matter. If one of those causes is giftedness, then it is relevant.

 

 

I do not believe that giftedness itself is ever the cause of behavioral problems. It can contribute to problems if the child is in an environment where she can not be herself and is under pressure to fit a box (such as public school)- but with homeschooling this should not be an issue.

 

My DD had perfectionism issues, and knowing that she is gifted did not help me at all to work on them. My equally intelligent DS is very much the minimalist, and knowing that he is gifted also did nothing to help me work on his issues.

 

I am sorry if I misunderstood you - in your first post, you sounded like what you wanted to test for is the IQ to determine whether your child is gifted. (It did not sound to me as if you were looking for a comprehensive psychological evaluation of her problems - maybe I missed that somehow). My point is solely that an evaluation of IQ does not determine the cause of behavior problems.

Edited by regentrude
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What you're talking about, essentially, is an issue of a LABEL.

I personally never understood why people find it so important to label their children, as if a label that's a product of a few hours of a psychological testing could provide the parents with any essential information on their children anyway.

 

What does gifted mean anyway? You have this imaginary "grade level" that's an approximation anyway, that a whole lot of normal kids don't fit into anyway, and you have a bunch of people who are making a living out of labelling kids who don't fit this imaginary "grade level" and a whole bunch of parents who are buying the idea that something is unnatural and different about their kids if they're slightly above/below that approximation anyway (I'm not talking about HUGE and OBVIOUS differences that manifest in the overall way of functioning, since that's something that very few kids have anyway, and based on your description, more likely than not your daughter is not one of them and doesn't function on an essentially different level than other kids, but it's the nuances that she's different in). In most cases, it's not. At all. Also keep in mind that "grade levels" in themselves are substandard already and that a lot of kids, if put into a different society with different expectations and ways of teaching would excel above our "grade levels". Which is another reason why being slightly above that grade level usually doesn't mean any giftedness.

 

This country is obsessed with labelling - every other kid seems to have some sort of label on him (whether regarding emotional or academic im/maturity) and parents even take pride in discussing the labels and testings. I find it more sick than healthy for a child to grow up in such an atmosphere. Also, such an atmosphere makes the differences blurr - nowadays it seems like every other kid is gifted/LD/whatnot, so kids who TRULY are and TRULY need help because of it don't get a needed treatment because they're grouped with a whole bunch of kids who are just a little different than imaginary "normal" and thus given the label.

 

Don't even get me started about IQ tests based on Raven's matrices and stuff of the kind, which mean close to nothing in terms of 'capturing', let alone measuring a phenomenon such as giftedness. You can't appropriately test or quantify such a phenomenon, and a whole lot of tests that exist out there function nearly like a market - they exist there BECAUSE there are parents willing to slap a label onto their kids, not vice-versa (I've got friends who are psychologists and whose rants on these issues I've been listening for years).

 

Are there kids and families that profit from an evaluation? Yes, of course, but unless you've noticed actual pathology of behavior and thought which without a shade of doubt points to something essentially different in your child, you're better off just relating to your child without any labels. Any normal adult person related anyway to their child, not to their gifted child. There's nothing essentially different about children within the range of standard deviations from the "grade level performation" that would bend itself to radically different teaching or require a radically different upbringing approach whatsoever. Most parents can just continue to peacefully sleep with no tests whatsoever, and continue to relate to their children and meet their needs where they are, and labels are totally unimportant for those cases.

 

:rant:

Edited by Ester Maria
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Just a thought to the OP - it sounds like you are leaning towards testing and maybe that is something that you need personally which is a different matter, IMO than the debate about testing in general.

 

I don't have any informed information to add but was very interested in the above post about labeling. We were living in England when my dd10 started school and as far as I'm aware, testing for giftedness was not done in any sort of routine way. My daughter had some difficulties with being unhappy at times the first year and the school headmaster just matter of factly said it may be because she was above adverage IQ and they helped me to help her. We then moved over to the USA and she was tested and attended the gifted program. With or without the label, what matters is what is done to help the child. Now that we are homeschooling, so many of the worries are no longer there. It is wonderful to be able to allow your child to move at their own appropriate speed.

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The numbers don't really explain anything, IMO. It's a lot of trial and error to find out what works, even with professional testing to give you the IQ numbers. :) (I have been tested myself and the numbers didn't change anything for me except the ability to tease that I got one point higher than my brother.)

 

It isn't just the FSIQ that you're looking for -- the subtest scores can reveal challenges in specific areas.

 

Here's an example.

My ds (then 7 and playing the cello for 2 years) was having trouble learning to sightread the way his cello teacher was trying to teach him. So, was the trouble that he just wasn't as quick as she was expecting and needed more repetition/drill? Should I have him chant? Did he need a more hands-on approach? A different book? Should we wait until he was older (something that a LOT of people were telling me)?

 

The subtest results on the WISC IV told us that he had SIGNIFICANT relevant weakness in sequencing. I had no idea. He was fine with math (fine -- not particularly advanced and not behind). His subtest scores in this area were less than 50% of most of his other scores. That's a big discrepancy. But he was compensating. He had/has a near-photographic visual memory. He's a gestalt (whole to parts) learner.

 

In the end I explained this newly discovered weakness and the now proven (from the subtest scores) strength (I also didn't realize how much of a strength it was and that he was using it to compensate.) to the cello teacher. We gave him LOTS of sheet music for songs he could already play or sing. Two weeks later he could sightread.

 

But he couldn't recite the order of the notes (A, B, C, D, E, F, G) backwards for ANYTHING. We had tried chanting while looking at the letters written down, hopping on the letter written like a number line, placing bean bag notes on a tape staff on the carpet, and writing it over and over again -- nothing. He still can't do it. He can't tell you that when he plays a G scale on the way down he's playing G, F, E, D, C, B, A without looking at his fingers and naming the note they are touching. And even then it takes him a good 2-3 seconds per note. He's been playing the cello for 6 years and is fairly advanced for his age. He sightreads pretty much anything and has played in an orchestra for 3.5 years.

 

In short we now know to leave it alone. We figured out that he could teach himself to sightread using his visual memory. We also realized how frustrating it must have been to have all that repetition focussed on learning sequentially. We gave ourselves permission to step away from the expectation that more drill would do it or that we should drop sightreading altogether b/c he just "wasn't yet ready." I'm SO glad that we didn't decide to wait until he was older. It wouldn't have solved the problem. I don't think we would have come upon those realizations without the information that the WISC IV subtest scores gave us.

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Are there kids and families that profit from an evaluation? Yes, of course, but unless you've noticed actual pathology of behavior and thought which without a shade of doubt points to something essentially different in your child, you're better off just relating to your child without any labels. Any normal adult person related anyway to their child, not to their gifted child. There's nothing essentially different about children within the range of standard deviations from the "grade level performation" that would bend itself to radically different teaching or require a radically different upbringing approach whatsoever. Most parents can just continue to peacefully sleep with no tests whatsoever, and continue to relate to their children and meet their needs where they are, and labels are totally unimportant for those cases.

 

:rant:

 

Did you not read the OP's comments. Obviously something is very different about this child. Most kids don't go to therapy unless there is an issue of some kind beyond normal childhood. Her child is having behavioral issues that she (or rather her therapist) suspects are related to a higher then average intellect. Not all gifted, even highly gifted, children are preforming significantly out of grade level. Especially when there are underlying issues, weather behavioral or undiagnosed learning delays.

 

Some of our kids are so out of the box that we do need a "label". And some of us do parent our gifted children differently, very differently then an average child.

 

I would say that we (my husband and I) are bringing up our children radically different then that of so many other children we know. This due to labels that were very useful for us. We have seen marked improvement in behavior and skill level since changing our parenting approaches in the last two and a half years. All because we dared to "label" our children and find a better way to do things. The "labeling" was only a step in the process, but for us it was a necessary step. It is not, of course, necessary for all parents to take that step, but for some, it is very helpful.

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Did you not read the OP's comments. Obviously something is very different about this child. Most kids don't go to therapy unless there is an issue of some kind beyond normal childhood. Her child is having behavioral issues that she (or rather her therapist) suspects are related to a higher then average intellect. Not all gifted, even highly gifted, children are preforming significantly out of grade level. Especially when there are underlying issues, weather behavioral or undiagnosed learning delays.

You would be surprised how MANY children are slapped with unnecessary labels while they only slightly differ from an imaginary "normal", how MANY children take medicines they don't need for a whole range of disorders many of them don't even have (besides, it's a well known fact that pharmaceutical industry is concerned with business far more than with health), how MANY children are taken to therapies they don't need and so forth. Am I saying that OP's child is necessarily one of those cases? No. Am I saying that there's a theoretical possibility that she is? Yes. I know a whole bunch of such cases too and it always saddens me.

 

It cannot POSSIBLY be that there are so many gifted kids out there as there are claimed to be - if there are, "gifted" needs to be redefined and "standard" needs to be redefined. A good friend of mine is a psychologist that works with gifted and "gifted" children and I've been listening to her (and not only her) rants about the overuse and 'prostitution' of the label "gifted" for YEARS, she says that it's like an epidemic, it's crazy for how little deviations children get labelled gifted (or LD, or whatever) and grouped into something they don't belong into. "Gifted" are the few percent of population, "highly gifted" are few promilles of population - not a third or a fourth of the population which gets labelled that way.

 

She says approximately the same thing about LDs (nowadays everything is called an LD).

My husband (a pharmacists) says the exact same thing about all the kids on medicaments for ADHD and similar illnesses - that a minority of those that take them actually need them. Guess who was the most against our daughter getting a diagnosis?

 

There IS an objective MANIA of diagnosing things (existent and non) in this country and it's not only my impression. And even if many children were helped that way, possibly many more were not.

 

Thence my general attitude: test for PATHOLOGY, not for small differences from a "normal way of functioning". When you notice blatant pathology of thought patterns and functioning of your child, something that's so out of ordinary, test. When you have a kid that thinks a bit more visually, is more quick, more parts to whole, a bit more impulsive or whatnot - that DOES NOT require testing and diagnosing and inventing disorders or labels as much as it requires you simply meeting the child where s/he is and working there, labels aside. As homeschoolers, we're in ideal situation to be able to relate to each of our children individually.

Some of our kids are so out of the box that we do need a "label". And some of us do parent our gifted children differently, very differently then an average child.

Absolutely, I agree, but... We're talking about a few PROMILLES in population when talking about SUCH children - not even a few percents. You may have kids in that very very small group of people, I may have, OP may have, anyone may have - but the chances are, one doesn't have such a child and if one has, one usually doesn't wonder about having one the way OP wonders, since those very pecular ways of functioning are SO blatant that one doesn't even wonder whether their child is like other children or not.

 

The fact is that most of those "gift symptoms" can be pretty much applied to most children at some stage. The way OP words the situation makes me conclude she has what I would call a bright kid, with some behavior issues, but not a genius that would bend itself to radically different upbringing and teaching and that would require professional oversight in doing so and a formal diagnosis. I might be wrong, of course, but there is something all too common in OP's wording and her daughter's symptoms. Or 80% of the children I know are gifted (which again cannot possibly be true - if the majority functions certain way, that's a new STANDARD).

 

That's where my comments stem from. I'm not taking away the logical possibility her daughter is one of those very rare and precious exceptions, but what she's describing is, really, a perfectly NORMAL KID, plus or minus some standard deviation from that normality in some ways of functioning that the vast majority of people fall into and function largely the same way. Normal kids profit the most from being treated like normal kids IME. Diagnoses should be saved for extreme cases IMO - but that's only me. I realize that my views on these issues are quite different from what's usual, but I still think it's good to be exposed to those views too.

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Thank you, nitascool. Yes, I am only thinking about this because the therapist mentioned it. And yes, we have issues that are definitely outside the range of normal, and no, I do not believe this has to be because my daughter is gifted or that these issues can only be caused by anything like that. All one has to do to see that is read my old posts, in which I know I have said my daughter is not gifted. Clearly I should not have asked here. My daughter's therapist knows more about our situation than anyone here. I will simply discuss it more with her when we go back next week, as I said. We've only seen her a few times so far and last time was the first time she mentioned it. I didn't think much about it at the time, but I have been since then. That's all. I have no idea why this is such a big deal to some of you.

 

Ester Maria, we don't have my daughter in therapy just because she has quirks, and I disagree with your claim that all highly gifted kids will be obviously so, based on my personal experiences. You can insist otherwise, or choose to believe that everyone who ever tested me gave me a "bad" test and I wasn't actually gifted at all, but I'm going to have to trust multiple experts over a stranger on the internet. Additionally, I didn't actually describe my daughter, so I don't know why you think I've given you enough information to decide this description is "all too common". I simply said that she has issues with perfectionism (among other things) and that she's not advanced in reading or math, but that her therapist (NOT ME) said she's very verbally advanced and this may be causing problems when she's lagging in other skills. How you could take those 3 pieces of information, when I have specifically stated that there is more to the picture ("among other things"), and determine that this is an accurae description that sounds just like a million other stories you've heard is beyond me. You cannot form an accurate idea of what is happening in our family or with our daughter based on 3 snippets of information from a message board.

 

Regentrude, I think it's just not true that giftedness only causes problems when there is an educational box the child is supposed to fit into. (You didn't say it was, but your post really only addresses that particular issue.) There are all kinds of "boxes" parents try to cram their kids into that have nothing to do with what they're learning in school that day, and based on my personal experience, some of them just don't fit for kids whose minds are always going, going, going and analyzing, analyzing, analyzing. It's easy for you to say the cause doesn't matter, but if parents don't understand it (I am not the only parent in this equation) then it becomes a very big deal.

 

If her therapist tells me that she believes DD does need special consideration based on unusual intellectual development, then I won't feel the need to test, because I don't need or care about a number. I just want to get to the root cause of some of her behavioral (and other) issues. That's it. Why I need to keep saying this over and over I don't really know. Again, I asked here because I was too impatient to wait until next week. I didn't realize this was such an emotional topic for some of you. If the therapist says testing would be helpful, we will. If not, we won't.

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I don't think we should worry so much about motives for testing. Its information. An IQ test doesn't just just give you a verdict on whether your child is gifted or not. It breaks their ability down into categories with the different subtests. My son's tester also made observations about how he thinks and learns. I knew my oldest child was gifted although I tended to doubt it until the IQ test. I thought maybe he was just ahead because I taught him when he was ready and at the level he needed. It was kind of alarming to have him so far ahead. Maybe my way of teaching was pushing him to be ahead. The IQ test gave me information to work with. Knowing his ability made me stop second guessing myself. I wasn't pushing, he was pulling. I knew I wasn't but moms have doubts, you know? Underneath it all I knew he was an exceptional learner but I didn't realize that he was exceptional in areas other than math. The IQ test helped me with that. I should have known but I had preconceptions. I also didn't know he was highly gifted. It let me relax about educating him in the way he needed it. It is outside the norm in many ways. But so is he. Since going through this with the oldest I'm much more relaxed about my other two children. Less doubts and overthinking things. But I'll probably still get them tested to be sure I don't have incorrect preconceptions about their abilities and to have information.

 

Terry

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I don't think we should worry so much about motives for testing. Its information. An IQ test doesn't just just give you a verdict on whether your child is gifted or not. It breaks their ability down into categories with the different subtests. My son's tester also made observations about how he thinks and learns. I knew my oldest child was gifted although I tended to doubt it until the IQ test. I thought maybe he was just ahead because I taught him when he was ready and at the level he needed. It was kind of alarming to have him so far ahead. Maybe my way of teaching was pushing him to be ahead. The IQ test gave me information to work with. Knowing his ability made me stop second guessing myself. I wasn't pushing, he was pulling. I knew I wasn't but moms have doubts, you know? Underneath it all I knew he was an exceptional learner but I didn't realize that he was exceptional in areas other than math. The IQ test helped me with that. I should have known but I had preconceptions. I also didn't know he was highly gifted. It let me relax about educating him in the way he needed it. It is outside the norm in many ways. But so is he. Since going through this with the oldest I'm much more relaxed about my other two children. Less doubts and overthinking things. But I'll probably still get them tested to be sure I don't have incorrect preconceptions about their abilities and to have information.

 

Terry

 

That's it: every word. :001_smile:

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Snowfall:

I am sorry that you did not like what I wrote.

You explicitly asked for our opinions and people gave you their opinions.

If you already know that you don't really want to hear people's views if they differ from yours because you are going to rely on your therapist's expertise anyway, that's fine - but then I don't quite understand why you ask for them in the first place.

Nobody is trying to convince you to do anything. People took the time to share their views because you asked them to.

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It wasn't the opinions that bothered me. It was the suggestions that if I had been paying attention, I wouldn't need to know anything anyone else could tell me (as in your first post) that I just want a label, or that I'm describing a "perfectly normal kid" and therefore am probably just seeing something where there's nothing (despite the fact that I didn't actually describe my kid, if anyone was paying attention). Those things are not opinions about whether or not testing is worthwhile. Those are opinions about MY child, MY parenting, and MY desires (which no one here actually knows). I didn't ask about any of that.

 

I asked if people thought testing was useful. I didn't need to be told that I could figure my kid's complicated issues out on my own, if only I'd pay more attention (again, what you - perhaps inadvertently - suggested) I didn't need to be accused of exaggerating and/or pathologizing my child's behavior by someone who has 3 snippets of information, which she believes are all she needs to determine that there's a great likelihood that I and my daughter's therapist are exaggerating. I understand that your situation is totally different than mine. I responded to you to explain why I thought testing might be useful for us. What you were saying simply wasn't relevant to MY situation, where there ARE issues, which 5 years of careful, mindful, thoughtful parenting have not made it possible for me to figure out on my own. You did not make allowances for situations like that. I did ask for opinions. Opinions on testing. Not opinions on the things good parents would know if they paid attention. Not opinions on how I'm probably exaggerating things. I'm pretty sure most people would get their feathers ruffled if they asked for opinions on the usefulness of testing, and instead were given opinions on how people out to stop pathologizing everything and how they'd know whatever they needed to know if only they'd pay attention to their kids.

 

I have seen several people in the K-8 forum tell people with gifted kids to come over here. I assumed there had probably been lots of threads with people asking about the same sort of thing. Perhaps I was wrong. Either way, I clearly see I shouldn't have bothered asking here. It certainly wasn't worth being accused of making things up, imagining things, or exaggerating things about my kid or wanting a label for her so I can brag (whatever it is people believe). I don't need an IQ test to brag about her. She's a fantastic, brilliant kid, whatever her behavioral problems. She's going to grow up to be a strong, brilliant adult, and no one will be able to get one over on her or push her around, whether she's gifted or not. That's good enough for me. I just want to help her get there the best way possible.

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Thank you, MissKNG. I have actually been meaning to add that book to my collection of numerous (lol) books I've read in an attempt to deal positively with my daughter. I guess I ought to finally get around to ordering it.

 

And thank you all for answering. I didn't realize this was such an emotionally charged issue for people. We actually do avoid labels, which is why we waited until we were sure DD really, absolutely was outside the range of normal behavior before we sought therapy, and why we sought out a specific type of therapist, trained in a certain method - one we knew would NOT label her with any diagnosis or recommend drugs. We dealt with behavior that most people can't even comprehend, because we did not want to label her or say anything was wrong with her...until it got to the point that we needed help, plain and simple. Anything that will help us help her, we will do.

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I read a book, years ago, written by a mother of a child with autism. She gave a quote something like

 

"Well meaning friends and neighbors say "Don't label him", but you can't look up "Spins wheels on cars" or "Screams all the time" in the library card catalog. Autism may not be perfect, but at least it's a place to start".

 

I feel the same about my DD's gifted label. It's not a perfect fit for her. But at least it's a place to start. (In our case, DD was tested not because we suspected giftedness, but because she had enough strange behaviors as a toddler/preschooler to have everyone and their brother suggesting autism, OCD, Aspergers, ADHD, and a partridge in a pear tree.) And it has been helpful-especially when it came to choosing to follow my gut feeling, pull her out of ps, and homeschool.

 

If you need a place to start, and can get the testing done affordably, by all means do it. It'll give you as many questions as it'll give you answers-but sometimes, just knowing what questions to ask makes all the difference.

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So I've been pretty consistently saying DD isn't gifted for quite a while, but now I'm starting to wonder if perhaps I just didn't notice, since she's not accelerated in reading or math. We started her in therapy for some behavioral issues a couple months ago, and her therapist says she is advanced verbally (we thought she was, but weren't sure) and that perhaps some of our issues have to do with her judgment and impulse control lagging behind her intellect.

 

I know I was considered highly gifted as a child and that these things can run in families, so should I have her tested? It's hard for me to be objective about this, because she's my kid and obviously I think she's smart, so I might be biased. On the other hand, if she is gifted, it's not in the ways I was, so it's hard for me to see that she might be gifted, kwim?

 

It seems like it might not be important to know, since we're homeschooling anyway. Then again, it seems like it might help us in understanding her better to know if she is. We certainly have our issues. So worthwhile or worthless in your opinions?

 

Edit: And I've read multiple websites on the qualities of gifted children. She meets many of them: intensity, difficulty relating to same age peers, curiosity, asynchronous development (advanced verbal skills, science understanding, but not math or reading skills), ability to focus for long periods on topics of interest, plus some others.

My two cents: if you think she might be gifted, but her academic achievement is not on par with what you might expect from a gifted student, I'd be on the lookout for LDs.

 

In such a case, I'd consider pursuing testing only with a tester who often deals with gifted and especially twice-exceptional kids. When three of my kids were tested last year, their issues were so unique that our tester had to have significant expertise in teasing the issues out of the various subtest scores. Having had one of the kids tested with more than one psych over the years, I was very impressed with our latest tester. We are pursuing therapy for issues that were discovered as a result of the testing - if we had not done the testing, I would not have had a clue.

 

Also, a couple of books I can recommend:

- Webb's "Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children"

- the Eides' "The Mislabeled Child"

 

Good luck!

:)

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My two cents: if you think she might be gifted, but her academic achievement is not on par with what you might expect from a gifted student, I'd be on the lookout for LDs.

 

In such a case, I'd consider pursuing testing only with a tester who often deals with gifted and especially twice-exceptional kids. When three of my kids were tested last year, their issues were so unique that our tester had to have significant expertise in teasing the issues out of the various subtest scores. Having had one of the kids tested with more than one psych over the years, I was very impressed with our latest tester. We are pursuing therapy for issues that were discovered as a result of the testing - if we had not done the testing, I would not have had a clue.

 

 

 

:iagree: What do you have to lose? I wasn't aware before reading this board that neurological and neurotic aberrations are more frequently found in the "gifted" population, especially the "highly gifted" and "profoundly gifted". Some of my relatives in the older generation (my father, in particular) would have benefited in their lives from early insights into what makes them tick. Information from testing may be really useful to you and to your child, later in life. The fact that you were gifted is a red flag. Trust your instincts and gather whatever information you think might be helpful. :)

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Testing ds have changed my life. I had no idea what was wrong with him. I knew he was very advanced, but on top of that, he looked like he had ADHD, ODD, fine motor skill problem etc. He is also very mouthy, thinks very fast, asks too many questions, but couldn't write (back in KG and 1st). Teachers didn't know how to deal with him since he already knew the materials a few years ago. We were at the point of not knowing where to put him to school the next year. Then we decided to test him.

 

The educational psychologist was very helpful. He took time to explain to us the kind of kid we have. He also told us that most likely public school would not be able to cater to this kind of kids. The best way is to homeschool. He also ruled out ADHD, ODD etc and explained many things to us. Without testing, I would still be frustrated with ds, rather than seeing things through his eyes. I understand him so much better than before. Testing him was worth it.

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