Intelligence at a price

One child described being gifted as being "vividly alive". Imagine being so keenly aware of everything around you. However, as I mentioned before, that heightened awareness comes with a price, and the higher the IQ, the higher the price tag.

Over excitability and sensitivity were two of the first clues that I was raising two gifted children. I love Webster's definition of excitability- "capable of being activated by and reacting to stimuli; a state of excitement or irritability". It fits perfectly, since there is rarely an in between for gifted children. They are either vividly happy, vividly sad, vividly angry, and the list goes on. Couple this with a deeper sensitivity to stimuli and situations than that seen in most children, and you might find yourself wondering, "What's going on with my child?"

Gifted children may find it difficult at times to find the "even ground" emotionally, especially when they are very young. Things like crowds, loud noises, music, or any kind of environment that is overly stimulating may evoke feelings that your child is unsure how to handle. If you find yourself in this situation, here are a few things that have worked for us.
  • Teach your child self-calming skills. This may even involve you physically sitting with your child in a quiet place when you recognize them getting over the edge.
  • Recognize what triggers your child's over-excitability so that you are better prepared.
  • Make sure you are consistent with rules and consequences when your child crosses the line with their behavior.
  • Even if your friends or family don't understand, remember that you are not alone.

I would love to hear from some of you. Have you found any great ways of helping your children work through these issues?

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