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Don't they sound similarly dissimilar? :)
Trust me ..It's not just about their intellectual capacity. We worry about each and everything that our kid does starting from how they are feeding to their performance in school and their decision making capacities and what not ...let me say, I am no exception to this ;) .All that runs in our mind is "oh! Is this normal? Is she lagging behind other kids? Is it just him or are there any other kids like this?" Some are too scared to compare and they have very low or no expectations on the kid. Some have high expectations as soon as they see their kid doing something better than others. Others are just confused as to what is normal for their kid. They are happy as long as they share their experiences with their peers, only to find that they are not alone in this world.
The schools don't seem to help either. Every parent teacher meeting especially in india I feel is just to explain how morose our kid is. And they seem to be successful at convincing us that the only problem seems to be the with the kid or the parent who is not spending enough time with them. Really? If 90% of the kids are slow in one area or the other..so only the rest 10% are normal? They tend to emphasize more on what our kid doesn't do rather than what they are actually capable of. Our confidence keeps fading every time we hear a negative comment about the child no matter how much we deny it. It's like this - "I will pick up on your negatives because it won't give you a chance to talk about what I have to do or it is to give you an idea that I am trying to do my best with whatever responsibility you have given me". Basically they are trying to cover up for their own lack of monitoring or else making sure that all the kids are at the same level so it's easier for them to handle without much personal involvement from their side. Are you still going to fall for this? The least we can do here is to stop questioning the kids about what's going wrong in the school based on the teacher's complaints itself. We assess based on what we know about our kid and then try to figure out how we can change this pattern.
Sometimes we like to live in this closed shell of ours where it feels like an escape from all this harsh societal norms or pressures so we can be happy with what we are. But closing ourselves is definitely not an option. Let me remind you again, pushing the kids beyond their capabilities so that you can convince yourself that your kid is normal is also not an option. It makes it easier if our assessment is not clouded by our own emotions for them. Then we can truly understand their capabilities, embrace what we have and encourage them in whatever way possible. Even the most precious diamond has its flaws, how are our kids any different? "What we fail to see in our kid is more important that what we want to see in them".
We are worried that if they don't follow the conventional system of education, they might end up having a very bad career and of course for our convenience we can immediately think of an example where that particular kid failed to have a life by following his/ her dream. But I want to ask them, how do u know why they failed in the 1 St place? It may be true that they are not that motivated, or may be they don't trust themselves as they are never been told that they are good enough at anything. I doubt if you give the kid enough confidence to believe in themselves, why shouldn't they succeed in whatever they want. Even I am not sure how my kid will turn out in the future with all these so called principles of upbringing I am writing here. But I am pretty sure whatever it is, I am giving him the strength to embrace all the failures he is going to have in his way. It's not always about what we achieved, i think it should be about how happy and content we are with what we have accomplished.
Remember - If a dream has failed, the problem is not with the dream in itself, but with how we pursued it!