Our series, 10 Strategies to Help Your Atypical Children Thrive, continues with today’s topic: Helping Our Kids Understand Themselves. Colleen discusses the value of self knowledge and acceptance for our kids, as well as how we can help them along the way.
“Discovering Self” And Our Children
One of the most important things we can do for our differently wired kids is help them understand who they are and how their brains are wired. I am asked all the time, “Should I label my child?” Or, “What if I don’t want them to be trapped in these labels for their whole lives?”
Should I Be Concerned About Labeling My Child?
When it comes to a child who is not typical, the reality is that they know they’re different in some way, shape or form. If you’re not labeling your kids and helping them understand how their brain works, they’re likely already labeling themselves.
If they’re seeing that they’re behaving differently than other children their age, or they’re thinking about things nobody else their age is thinking about, your child is going to understand that something’s different about them. Moreover, they’re going to give themselves a label. They’re going to give themselves the label of I’m stupid. I’m dumb, I’m wrong. There’s something wrong about me. Nobody likes me. They will label themselves.
Think back to when you were a kid and you felt out of place.
I’m sure your internal dialogue was less than complimentary. I know mine was. I know from talking with my own kids, that when they feel off or different, they’re creating a kind of inner dialogue over what’s going on and it’s not very complimentary.
When we give them this gift of understanding that their brain is wired in a way that makes this more difficult or this easier for them, they start to view the world through that lens.
Maybe it’s harder for me in a certain situation to control my impulses and it’s really easy for my brother to control his. That just means I need to work a little harder at this part of my life. He will need to work a little harder in different areas of his life. They come to see what it is about their brain that makes them unique and also great because of it.
Knowledge truly is power. This true for us as parents. It is also true for our children.
Being Honest With Our Children
When your kids ask questions about themselves, answer them, don’t evade. Give them direct answers. Then, if needed, you can problem solve together.
This is so empowering for our kids. Helping them understand that sometimes they do things because their brain is wired in a special way normalizes it and helps them feel seen and valued as they are.
Strategies To Help Your Atypical Child Thrive
This is part of our series, 10 Strategies to Help Your Atypical Children Thrive.
Download your free parent guide below.
The Raising Lifelong Learners Podcast Episode #166 – Showing Up In Our Homeschools
Our series, 10 Strategies to Help Your Atypical Children Thrive, continues with today’s topic: Helping Our Kids Understand Themselves. Colleen discusses the value of self knowledge and acceptance for our kids and how we can help them along the way.
Links And Resources From Today’s Show:
- SPONSOR: CTC Math
- The Learner’s Lab, a Raising Lifelong Learners community created just for your quirky family!
- The Best Advice I Can Give You: Become A Student Of Your Child
- A Guide To Overexcitabilities And Gifted Children
- The Best Ideas For Challenging Your Gifted Learner
- Knowing Your Gifted Child
- 5 Things You Need To Know About Homeschooling Gifted Kids
- Homeschooling Twice Exceptional Kids
- Dear Tired Mom of Gifted Kids
Leave a Rating or Review
Doing so helps me get the word out about the podcast. iTunes bases their search results on positive ratings, so it really does help — and it’s easy!
- Click THIS link to go to the podcast main page.
- Click on View in iTunes under the podcast cover artwork.
- Once your iTunes has launched and you are on the podcast page, click on Ratings and Review under the podcast name. There you can leave either or both! Thanks so much.
Want to record your own question, comment, or have your kids tell us what they LOVE to learn about? Click below and start recording!