I HAVE 4 CHILDREN AND MY OLDEST DAUGHTER IS NINE. SHE IS VERY SMART, IS IN THE GIFTED PROGRAM AND VERY INVOLVED IN SPORTS . I WAS READING THE CONVERSATION ABOUT THE PRESSURES ON KIDS TODAY AND SAW OUR SITUATION. I FEEL WE HAVE PUSHED HER TOO HARD. ALL WE TALK ABOUT IN COLLEGE AND BEING SUCCESSFUL TO HER. I HAVE NOTICED OVER THE PAST FEW MONTHS SHE HAS BECOME VERY EMOTIONAL. SHE CAN NOT TAKE ANY KIND OF CRITICISM EVEN WHN ITS JUST TO HELP HER. SHE THINKS EVERYTHING WE ARE SAYING TO HER MEANS WE ARE UPSET WITH HER AND THAT IS NOT TRUE. SHE HAS BECOME VERY ARGUMENTATIVE AND CONSTANTLY CRYING OR FUSSING ABOUT THINGS AND SEEMS TO HAVE LITTLE SELF CONFIDENCE. WE ARE EXTREMLY PROUD OF HER. SHE SUCCEEDS AT EVERYTHING SHE DOES WITH FLYING COLORS. WE REALLY NEVER MEANT TO PUSH HER WE JUST WANTED TO MAKE SURE SHE WAS PREPARED FOR COLLEGE. HOW DO I BEGIN TO CORRECT THIS NOW AND HOW DO I DETERMINE IF THIS IS JUST A CHANGE IN HER PERSONALITY DUE TO NATURAL AND PHYSICAL CHANGE OR SOMETHING WE HAVE CAUSED W. TOO MUCH PRESSURE. I HAVE HAD MANY MOMS TELL ME IT IS NORMAL AT THIS AGE. PLEASE HELP. I JUST WANT TO RAISE HEALTHY HAPPY , CONFIDENT CHILDREN. THANKS STACIE
Stacie - Thanks for reaching out regarding this very important topic. One of the best books I've ever read on parenting, called "Parenting From the Inside Out" talks about how the very first and important step is "awareness." You have become aware of the situation and perhaps your parenting style. So, congratulations.
There are many articles on our website to help you. You can go to our information centers titled Gifted Children or The Middle Years and you might try typing in these words in the search bar at the top of the page "social emotional gifted children" or "over achievers."
Also, on a personal note, when I become aware of things I'm doing as a parent and I'm not sure if they are helping or hurting, I try to just give my child some space and not do anything. Often, he will show or tell me what he really needs. Good luck, Denise