Recently in Family Category
"Because gifted children are able to consider the possibilities of how things might be, they tend to be idealists. However, they are simultaneously able to see that the world is falling short of how it might be. Because they are intense, gifted children feel keenly the disappointment and frustration which occurs when ideals are not reached. Similarly, these youngsters quickly spot the inconsistencies, arbitrariness and absurdities in society and in the behaviors of those around them. Traditions are questioned or challenged. For example, why do we put such tight sex-role or age-role restrictions on people? Why do people engage in hypocritical behaviors in which they say one thing and then do another? Why do people say things they really do not mean at all? Why are so many people so unthinking and uncaring in their dealings with others? How much difference in the world can one person's life make?
"When gifted children try to share these concerns with others, they are usually met with reactions ranging from puzzlement to hostility. They discover that others, particularly of their age, clearly do not share these concerns, but instead are focused on more concrete issues and on fitting in with others' expectations. Often by even first grade, these youngsters, particularly the more highly gifted ones, feel isolated from their peers and perhaps from their families as they find that others are not prepared to discuss such weighty concerns.
"When their intensity is combined with multi-potentiality, these youngsters become particularly frustrated with the existential limitations of space and time. There simply aren't enough hours in the day to develop all of the talents that many of these children have. Making choices among the possibilities is indeed arbitrary; there is no "ultimately right" choice. Even choosing a vocation can be difficult if one is trying to make a career decision between essentially equal passion, talents and potential in violin, neurology, theoretical mathematics and international relations.
"The reaction of gifted youngsters (again with intensity) to these frustrations is often one of anger. But they quickly discover that their anger is futile, for it is really directed at "fate" or at other matters which they are not able to control. Anger that is powerless evolves quickly into depression. "
Rebecca Gregoire offers five reasons, but I think they can be boiled down to identification rather than alienation. Her parents established a strong family identity under God and cultivated that sense of identity in their children -- this is who were are as a family, and we are all in this together. This is a very convicting post, because it reminds me of family habits that I have failed to build and practice consistently. It's too easy to let everyone in the family focus on their own priorities and to neglect bringing everyone together for worship and prayer, for communication about important issues, and for fun.
"The unloved daughter doesn't know that she is loveable or worthy of attention; she may have grown up feeling ignored or unheard or criticized at every turn. The voice in her head is that of her mother's, telling her what she isn't (smart, beautiful, kind, loving, worthy). Her accomplishments and talents will continue to be undermined by that internalized maternal voice, unless there is some kind of intervention. Daughters sometimes talk about feeling that they are 'fooling people' and express fear that they'll be 'found out' when they enjoy success in the world....
"When I was a child, my mother held me back by focusing on my flaws, never my accomplishments. After college, I had a number of jobs but, at every one, my bosses complained that I wasn't pushing hard enough to try to grow. It was only then that I realized that I was limiting myself, adopting my mother's view of me in the world."
These are the roots from which my father-in-law sprang. Youngest speakers are in their 60s, the last generation that grew up with German spoken at home, church, and school. A University of Texas scholar is documenting the dialect while there's still time. The BBC story explains some of the distinctives of the Texas variety of German. You can learn more at the Texas German Dialect Project website.
A heartwarming tribute to small-town newspapers and the late Dorothy Craig Drain, publisher of the Stamford (Texas) American.
The computer on which I learned how to program, and the first computer I got paid to program. A wealth of info about the Wang 2200, a machine that pioneered the BASIC programming language and interactive computing.
How sinful anger at a child's sin disqualifies a parent from helping that child to repentance and restoration, what's required to "re-qualify," and the consequences if you don't. Plus an important "heart check" at the end. If you asked your kids questions like this, what answers would they give?
- When you think of me, do you first think of my love for you or my displeasure in you?
- Which is greater in your mind, as it pertains to me: affection or correction?
- When I say I have something to say to you, what do you think first? I'm going to encourage you or discourage you?
- Am I generally a joy or a burden to be around?
- If you could choose a word that best describes my affection for you, what would that word be?
Regional Park in Midwest City, Oklahoma, had one of these, right across the street from my aunt's apartment. Pretty exciting sight for a young Star Trek fan.
"An article in the most recent issue of the American Journal of Play details not only how much children's play time has declined, but how this lack of play affects emotional development, leading to the rise of anxiety, depression, and problems of attention and self control.
"'Since about 1955 ... children's free play has been continually declining, at least partly because adults have exerted ever-increasing control over children's activities,' says the author Peter Gray, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology (emeritus) at Boston College. Gray defines 'free play' as play a child undertakes him- or her-self and which is self-directed and an end in itself, rather than part of some organized activity.
"Gray describes this kind of unstructured, freely-chosen play as a testing ground for life. It provides critical life experiences without which young children cannot develop into confident and competent adults. Gray's article is meant to serve as a wake-up call regarding the effects of lost play, and he believes that lack of childhood free play time is a huge loss that must be addressed for the sake of our children and society."
"But as my preschooler draws various dinosaurs from his favorite board book, correcting my pronunciations of words a boy his age should not know how to say and my now 2nd-grader hands me last year's history book, apparently finished during her late night bedtime reading sessions just for fun, I'm realizing that school has already started.
"In fact, it probably never really ended last May."