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Does anyone have a GT teen that is a perfectionist


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but also the biggest procrastinator? Or, better yet, they don't even TRY to do an assignment if they know it won't be up to par with their own expectations?


I just want to cry. I give up. I homeschooled her all the way through high school and didn't understand what was going on until now.

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Not only do I have a son who is NINE and just like this, but I am just like this and was a teen who rarely did work that I could not do at 110%. Drove my mom crazy. I struggle to make myself do ANYTHING that I cannot complete to my fullest potential. I often find myself saying to myself 1/2 assed is 1/2 done, 1/2 done is a good start. This is to augment a saying that 1/2 assed is not worth doing at all. Nice right? Sorry but there is no nice way to say that.


As for support, help your teen break tasks and assignments into parts. Help your teen to accomplish these and then later go back and make changes. For my son, I often will write while he talks... just helping him get his words out and eliminating spelling or penmanship concerns.


One of the the problems for both him and I, is missing a deadline. If we miss our deadline we cannot seem to get back on track. So, I have learned to set artificial deadlines, I have to tell others about them. What I am doing is playing into my perfectionism, my refusal to let myself or others down. Trust me, without deadlines I am a MESS. Long term deadlines are rough because there is too much to put off. So, now I set several deadlines. When I miss one, I am crushed, have to regroup and then try again!


Remember that your teen is likely to be betting themself up over this, fearful of failing themself and others. This is rarely done as an act of defiance, which was hard for my mom to understand. At times, even though I see myself in my son, it is hard for me to understand.


Example, "son, you have until 830 Monday morning to scaffold 8 of these 10 sentences. Remember that your grandparents are here, that dad has things planned for you to do. Today is Friday, so you may want to consider setting to do 2 sentences each morning and evening, will not take you long that way." Fast forward to 8am Monday morning, "Just wanted to remind you that your assignment is due in 30 minutes, how are you feeling about it?"


Complete shut down, he knew he should have been able to do it and was kicking himself for not getting it done. Mind you this FULL assignment if done in one sitting would take him about 15 minutes, start to finish. At 830, he came to me saying it was not done. At 845 I went back to him, he was not working on it. I asked why and he told me "I do not know when it needs to be done by." WHAT??? So I told him, "It should have been done 15 minutes ago, but I will give you until 930."


20 minutes later, the boy who had been pouting and freaking out on me, came floating into my room with his work finished, correct and neat. We went on as if nothing had happened.


I started to see defiance, hence the WHAT????, but I regrouped my thoughts and feelings and gave another deadline that I knew was obtainable and SHORT! Just as I would have had to do for myself.


I hope this insight helps. I know that my mom was bothered beyond belief with my perceptions. I know that I find myself at odds with my son. I also know that you care enough to see this through and your child will benefit from your compassion, as I did from my mom's.



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