Hiddengifted’s Blog

Posts Tagged ‘education

Girls, especially gifted ones, can get very focused at times. I remember making many split-second decisions, such as the fact that I wanted a new Polly Pocket right then, that drove my mother crazy.
The year I turned 16, I needed a new pair of jeans. I decided that I was going to get my jeans, if I had to pay for them or not. My mother wanted to make me a pair, but I thought that would take too long and I’d never get my jeans. And so, every time we went to Sears or Target, I headed straight to the clothing section and looked for jeans on sale. I found them one day at Sears, and begged my mother to buy them, or let me buy them. She gave in and purchased them, and so now I had my jeans. I was happy. My focus was now shifted to something else: the upcoming rampage of schoolwork.

But you see my point. It is very easy for gifted girls to become focused, and not pay attention or listen to anything or anyone else. They know what they want, and don’t really understand why you, frankly, don’t get it. But they don’t see that as their problem. If you don’t understand, that’s your fault. The fact that it might be a bad idea is “totally irrelevant”. They know what they want. Why don’t you?

Due to the fact that they are gifted, these will be prone to asking more questions than normal girls. They probably won’t accept the fact that boys are left to the boys, and girls are expected to stay where it’s nice and safe and leave well enough alone.
They don’t get that.
So gifted girls think faster and process more quickly than normal girls. That’s okay, but you have to be ready to deal with the sudden tears, unhappiness, and questions that come with the act of realizing they might not be able to do what they want to.

Okay, so we got that part. Gifted girls think differently than other girls. All right. But why are they in particular so paranoid about their looks?

Part of- if not most of- the reason of gifted girls’ loss of confidence is again, the male- pleasing world around them. They see the images in magazines, movies and TV of skinny girls and women parading around. All they know is that they don’t look like that.
There must be something wrong.
Everything they see simply screams that thin is beautiful. If you’re not thin, they teach, You’ll never be anybody. You’ll never be beautiful, and you’ll never get a date. The pressure from the peers around them do the rest. They become obsessed with their weight, because if they weigh too much, they can’t be thin. And if they’re not thin, they’re not beautiful.
They’re basically following logic done unconsciously. A lot of their thoughts are grounded in unconscious logic, denying the fact that they’ve accepted for so long: that they’re not as smart and won’t do as well as boys. Even into the SATs, the girls do WORSE THAN BOYS because somewhere, deep inside them, there’s this voice whispering, “You can’t do it. You know you can’t.”
So it’s basically the fault of the world around them that gifted girls are insecure and sometimes delicate. Nothing can become the way it is without influence, and these girls’ influences are the people around them, what they see and what they hear. So far, the influences haven’t been good.

Imagine this: you’re stuck on an island. The only thing with you is a tape recorder that is broken and won’t shut up. It keeps repeating the same phrase: “You’re fat”. Day in and day out, after weeks of being with this stupid machine, you’d start believing it, wouldn’t you? And after that, if you ever got of the island, you’d be frightened that it might actually come true.
Welcome to the startling reality of a gifted girl. Only that message could be a billion different things. “Being smart is makes you different”, “Different things are bad”, “Thin is in! And you‘re fat.”, and a dozen different lies. And it won’t shut up. Wouldn’t you believe it, too?

By the time they’ve graduated collage, gifted young women have already decided that they’re dreams “won’t do”. If you ask why, you might receive any one of these answers:

“It would take too much.”

“It would never happen.”

“It was impossible anyway.”

“Well, I wanted to do this too. And this is way closer than that.”

Sound familiar? A lot of gifted girls somehow lose their imagination and determination between middle school and college. They find that the world doesn’t like girls who think, and thus our culture “make them see” that their dreams are “quite impossible”.
Walt Disney said something about dreams being impossible. But his quote went something like this:
“All of our dreams can be reached if we have the courage to pursue them.”
That’s what I want to do. And I want to encourage people to join me, so we can do it together.

Gifted girls can be perfectionists. I am one of those. I’m a straight-A student, I like it when my day is mostly planned out, and am terribly disappointed when something goes wrong. If I get anything less than a B or even think I’m going to flunk a test, I completely lose it. I’ve decided that school will get me to college, college will get me a degree, and a degree will get me a job.
But nobody knows the other side of me. What risks I want to take, how I want to test myself, or what I want to do- I haven‘t told almost anyone. I’m almost afraid to tell my parents, because I don’t know how they’ll react. I know the world won’t like it.

But I don’t care. I’m going to shock the world. Let it come. If not me, than someone else will. I’m going to prove that gifted girls can do things, and that the impossible can be reached.
I know, because I’m going to do it.

“Doing the impossible is kind of fun!” — Walt Disney

As Martin Luther King Jr. said, “I have a dream.”
Care to join me?

My name is Future. I don’t think you can imagine what I am made of. I see many things in my time, for I am as long as there is a tomorrow. But this I see, and all I know- all are not treated as if they are created equal. And I see this in the place who declared that all would be equal and treated so in their initial document. Tell me, what is wrong with what I see?
The future women of America are treated as if they are stupid, idiotic or dumb. They are bored to death, and then expected to do the best they can. They are not receiving the best that can be given, robbing them of their futures. Many voices have cried out, yet few have answered.
Who will listen?
—————————————————————————–

Gifted girls everywhere are dying. The schools where they are put do not give them the sufficient tools they need for life, instead teaching them to ignore the monotonous, ever-present never-ceasing drone of the teachers. Some of their pains are their teachers, peers or simply the problems of being put into a place where they expect the students to operate on a low level. Obviously, this would be called a “problem”.
Imagine this: you like rock ‘n roll music. Anything that’s loud and has a beat you’ll listen to. Your controlling best friend likes classical. This drives you crazy. You share an office between the two of you, and it has one stereo. Your friend has a code that lets him in earlier than you, so he gets to choose the music. So every day, without fail, you listen to classical music until the lunch hour, when you can play your music until your friend returns. Your relief usually lasts about half an hour. Then you are thrust back into the bland, colorless world of pianos and orchestras, when you would much rather be listening to electric guitars try to outdo each other with riffs to the crashing beat of drums.
Get the picture?

“You” defines a gifted girl. Gifted kids have a specific way they think, complimented by many thoughts and patterns woven into their lives. Gifted girls are no exception. The children and teenagers they encounter in the classrooms are very different from themselves, and are sometimes so… normal. One can only go for so long listening to the average cheerleader anecdote about her nails, or other girls giggling about that cute new boy. Speaking from experience, it’s very hard to be friends with someone whose IQ is far below your own, because there‘s never any real conversation!
And then there are the teachers, who only know how to separate the material out, bit by bit, to the “normal” children can chew it. Gifted girls- actually, gifted children in general- get starved by this because they can take much more at one time, and they’re never getting it. Their classes slowly become boring, and they stop listening. Thus, you have a brilliant student with terrible grades. Even though they know they can do better, they don’t want to because there’s no point. It’s just not interesting.
So the classical music stands for the normal, everyday things that cause a gifted girl trouble, like the teachers, material and their peers. There’s only one channel at a public school, so every day, the only thing they listen to is classical music when what gifted girls need is variety and tutoring suitable for learning from.

So, back to the subject. What do gifted girls need?
Gifted girls have a billion burdens having to do with the way they’re seen by others. The rest of the world wants them to be the image of a good girl: smart, but no too smart; beautiful, but not vain; fit but not overweight or overweight; the list goes on and on. Gifted girls need encouragement, confidence and reassurance every day that what they do and even themselves will be accepted. Even though they act like they don’t care, inside they may be crying.
They’re extreme perfectionists. If any one thing is wrong with them, they’ll become obsessed with fixing it so they don’t “stand out”. This is the reason for their burdens, worries and the need to blend in. They figure out what the world wants, and in order not to “stand out”, they do their best to supply it. In order to succeed, they “dumb down” and become as normal as they can be, hiding who they really are in order to be someone that others want.
It doesn’t help that the world welcomes boys who voice questions and shout out answers, but shuns girls who try to do the same thing, sometimes asking or answering the same questions. It has been society’s habit to ignore the ideas and thoughts of the fairer sex, opting for the “manly decision”. Even the plotlines of movies and TV shows reflect the presumption, and drill it into the heads of the viewers that it is expected: women will be more frail than men. Thanks to things like that and the old-fashioned ideas of others, women are put on a much lower intelligence level then men.

“We were brave and eager,” Jane O’Reilly writes about herself and the women she grew up with. “And then we discovered that these were not the required traits for girls. Only boys could expect to inherit the earth.” O’Reilly, Jane, “The Lost Girls,” Mirabella, April, 1994, 117

May I remind the reader that even voting was restricted to males until the 1920s! In many countries, women are expected to do no more than be a source of pleasure, keep the house, and raise the children correctly. No more. It is no wonder, then, that whenever gifted girls try to speak up for themselves, they are given deaf ears or the ever-popular “m-hm, oh, yes…” and then forgotten. Gifted girls crave freedom, and they dream of the idea that someone might actually let them be themselves. It takes an adult to tell them so, and they won’t listen to anybody else.

The National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) created a list, and termed it…

The Gifted Children’s Bill of Rights:
You have a right…

To know about your giftedness
To learn something new every day
To be passionate about your talent area without apologies
To have an identity beyond your talent area
To feel good about your accomplishments
To make mistakes
To seek guidance in the development of your talent
To have multiple peer groups and a variety of friends
To choose which of your talent areas you wish to pursue
Not to be gifted at everything

I read this when I came across a poster at the NAGC’s trade show, and loved it. I wanted to do all those things, and here it was on paper that I could really do it. The fact that it’s from the National Association for Gifted Children only made it more official. I wanted to remind myself that it was permitted to be who I was. I’m not the only one who needs reminding.
Please do not forget this point! IF YOU TREAT GIFTED CHILDREN NORMALLY, THEY WILL DECIDE THAT BEING GIFTED IS A BAD THING! Eventually, they will lose their love for what makes them special, and become just like any other child.

They need company. Gifted girls need others like themselves, girls they can talk to. All girls need their “crew”, or people around them who support them. A lonely gifted girl, though, will quickly get into some serious trouble.

TIP: Surround a lonely girl with a bunch of other students who think the way she does, or are around her IQ level. It doesn’t matter if they’re boys or girls; a girl by herself will bond with anyone she can find, especially if it’s important to her to fit in.



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  • cherokeebydesign: I suppose I was the smart one in high school and then again in college......it's not all that fun being labeled as "the smart one" in school. Raven
  • cherokeebydesign: There's nothing wrong with having a life that is planned, and there's nothing wrong with wanting perfection. I use to be that way....until I started

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