Finding and Forging Gifted Friendships
One of the most challenging aspects of parenting a gifted and twice-exceptional child is finding a community. It can be tough to find a community of parents who have kids like yours, and it can be equally, if not more challenging to locate a community for your child.
I always find myself wondering what folks did before the internet. I have found so much solace in the friendships I’ve formed through several online gifted communities. I think I would be lost without this support and I am grateful for it each and every day.
Support and Friendships for Parents of Gifted Children
I have found an incredible amount of support through the following online gifted communities:
When I first started researching giftedness, I stumbled upon Hoagies’ and I will be forever thankful for what Carolyn has created. Whenever I had a question, I’d turn to Hoagies’ and I’d find answers. It is thanks to Hoagies’ that we connected with a psychologist in our area who is experienced with gifted and 2E children. Those testing results gave us the courage to homeschool.
I’ll be forever grateful to our psychologist for telling us about DYS. I’ll never forget the moment, during testing, that she came out to tell me, “I can tell you without even scoring the protocol that he’s going to qualify.” I’m still astounded that I never learned about Davidson during my training as a school psychologist. What a wonderful support network of parents!
I discovered GHF the week I decided to homeschool, and thank goodness I did! I am thankful for the folks at GHF, for the community they have built, the resources they share… not to mention the friendships I have formed among the GHF blogger community. GHF is one of those sites, like Hoagies’, that I start and end my day with!
I have made so many connections and friendships since embarking on this homeschool journey. I’m thankful that GHF and Hoagies’ helped me connect with my friend, Colleen. I so often feel that Colleen is living my life in another state. Together, Colleen and I have forged a fantastic community of our own, Raising Poppies. It has been beyond wonderful to talk to other parents of gifted and twice-exceptional children. You finally realize that what you are experiencing is normal for gifted children.
Support and Friendships for Gifted Children
I’m not going to lie, folks, this can be hard. These gifted and 2E kiddos are all so unique. I often hear people say, “If you’ve met one PG kid, you’ve met one PG kid!” and that’s not even factoring in the 2E part of the mix. My son is able to connect and to play with his peers right now. I’ve watched it in action, but I worry. I worry because I hear the conversations he has with them and I see that, often, his friends do not always catch his references or understand his words. I know that this divide is only going to grow. My son is quirky. It’s tough to be a kid these days but it’s doubly hard to be a quirky, asynchronous kid. I watch these interactions and I wonder when the divide will grow larger, and I worry about how to find those much-needed intellectual peers for him to connect with.
Finding a community for Leo has been a far more challenging pursuit, but the following groups have been, or promise to be, helpful in this endeavor:
Through the DYS program, Leo has been able to connect with other PG children online and he also has a DYS pen pal. Most recently, he has met a local DYS and the two became fast friends. In the future, I would love for our family to participate in the Davidson Summits, but it wasn’t in the cards this year with our recent home renovation.
PG Retreat is another free family support network. There are annual retreats and we definitely want to attend one in the near future!
Sometimes, you need to take matters into your own hands, folks. In order to find local compadres for my little fella, this introvert broke out of her shell a bit to organize Granite State Gifted, a support network for families of gifted and twice-exceptional children in the southern NH/MA area. We have had several outings, including a moms’ night out, and I am so thankful for this growing community.
Now, it’s your turn. Have you found a support network of parents for yourself? Have you found a community for your child? Share here!
This post has been part of the Hoagies’ Gifted Education Page July 2015 Blog Hop: Gifted Relationships. Please click on the image below to keep on hoppin’!
Cait co-hosts The Homeschool Sisters Podcast and is co-founder of Raising Poppies, a community for parents of gifted and twice-exceptional children. Cait is also founder of the Family Book Club at My Little Poppies, a fantastic community of book-loving parents and the Gameschool Community at My Little Poppies, a vibrant community of gameschoolers.
Cait is a contributing writer for Simple Homeschool and GeekMom. Her work has also appeared on The Huffington Post, The Mighty, and Scary Mommy. You can find her on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram
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