Raising a Gifted Child and the Perception of Hothousing

Madison loves learning. Madison learns things very quickly that she is interested in. Madison loves seeing her progress and is very competitive.

This does not equal me hothousing her. It equals me providing opportunities for her to learn, how she wants to learn.

I am her mother and now her teacher and I will do anything to meet her her needs. I will ensure she’s on track if she chooses to go back to public school. I will ensure she can dig deeper into whatever subjects she’s interested in. I will protect her innocence and only expose her to what I feel is age appropriate.

This does not in any way equate to hothousing. I do not push her. I make her learn certain aspects of Math and complete assignments she isn’t particularly interested in. And she gets it. She understands ‘everything’ isn’t going to interest her in the same way and some things you just have to learn to move on. And it may be at a higher level. That is completely in her control. I make sure she does an appropriate amount of time and she grasps it quickly and moves forward at her own pace. That is her, not me. And I am willing to try new things to see if that helps her love of learning even if I am hesitant of the curriculum.

Just because a child learns things very quickly, doesn’t mean there is a parent pushing them to learn behind it. Parents of exceptionally and profoundly gifted children don’t have to hothouse their children to learn. They are too busy trying to keep up to even have the time. They are too busy trying to figure out what information they can provide to fulfill the hunger of learning in a satisfying way for their child.

And trust me when you have a child that does, you downplay it to most people and feel absolutely horrible for it at the end of the day. Like you betrayed your child and I will admit there isn’t a worse feeling in the world than that.

And if you are lucky enough to know people that understand, you surround yourself around them because you know you won’t be judged.

And then you wake up and do it all over again the next day. And hopefully day after day you begin to not care what others think and stop downplaying. And in return, stop feeling guilty. And learn to focus on the moments you can share without being judged or feel guilty for and you increase those moments you can share with others that understand and decrease the others. Because you finally understand that no matter what you say, it it won’t change the understanding. What truly matters are those who ‘get it’ even if it is in a different way. Because what works for one doesn’t work for another. But you can share what works and someone gets it, then that is the best feeling in the world. To be able to share without being judged. And those are the moments to be cherished.

7 Comments on “Raising a Gifted Child and the Perception of Hothousing

  1. It always amazes me when people think you can hothouse a child. Even if you could – why would you want to?? I remember a period when she had a fascination with wells. Yes, wells. Who on earth would try and teach a 4-year old about wells? Not me. Luckily, this was a short phase and she moved on to something else.

    I agree with surrounding yourself with people ‘get it’. Finding your tribe is so important!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. This is so true. I think I downplayed my daughter’s giftedness for so long because we already had multiple strikes against us in the finding understanding department (older parents, long childlessness, only child). I felt like almost no one could relate to us and any time we would try to explain how our child didn’t fit the norm, people would think we were just enamored with our special snowflake child. Keeping up with a gifted child is like a full-time job and most people don’t get that.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Pingback: I Have a Gifted Kid and I Will No Longer Be Ashamed | Crushing Tall Poppies

  4. You make me feel that there is a light, a possibility, for gifted children – I was one such, without parental support (taught myself to read at 4, book reports on Beowulf by 10, historical analysis of sword-making in Beowulf & early Old English poetry by 15… valedictorian when my final school was my 27th) and often the schools were clueless what to do. An paper on Anne Boleyn at 11 got me tested and my mother was offered for me to skip a couple of grades, get my GED, and a 100% scholarship… She refused because girls weren’t worth it.

    So when I read Raising Wizards and your blog, I’m happy that there is this fierce determination to nurture and encourage the gifted. I think the saying is that you give me the feels?

    Well done, very well done.

    Liked by 1 person

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