Don’t underestimate your child

by | Jul 20, 2023

Let’s be real – there are a vast array of people in this world that perceive a child who is non-verbal or pre-verbal to not be as bright as the rest.  This statement is a generalisation, it can be a trigger and it’s also true.

I’ve heard and experienced countless stories of children with a variety of labels such as asd, adhd, dyslexia, ODD you name it, and the stigma is that the child just isn’t very smart.

One of the many things I’ve learnt on this journey with my angel boy is that our children are far smarter than what we give them credit for.  They are using all of their senses because most times their senses are heightened and they are more in tune with things that we can’t see, hear, smell, taste or touch.   Our kids are taking information in, processing it, however they’re not always using that information the way that society would expect.  Maybe it takes them days, weeks, months to reconcile what they’re learning.  Sometimes, like my angel boy, they’re storing it.  Cataloguing it in their mind – because maybe they don’t feel its relevant to use at that very time or maybe they are just choosing not to use that learnt information.

Either way, our children are learning, taking in and absorbing so much information that we are giving out.

I try not to discuss information pertaining to my child when he’s in the room.  I feel like I’m disrespecting him.  Talking about him while he’s right there and rest assured, he’s listening to every single word.

Having studied the brain and how we think, the likelihood of him hearing something that I’ve said and then potentially placing a different meaning on it than what I meant to say is very likely.  We as humas are meaning making machines.  We need to put meaning onto everything so that we can makes sense of it, so that we can categorise it and figure out where this piece of information will go.

For the longest of time, I wanted to protect my child.  To shield him from the world or if something was too hard, I wanted to protect him.  Many years later I see this action was more about me than about him.  We will all fail.  This, my friends, is a very real certainty.  Stopping a child from trying shows them that we as parents do think they can do it.  That we think they have limitations.  That we don’t believe that they can do it.  Would you want your mum to think that about you?  Would you want your boss to think that about you?  Would you want your partner to think that about you?

Let them try.  Let them fall.  Let them fail.  This is how we as a species learn.

Don’t underestimate your child.

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