SFP 175: Early Bloomers

10.16.2019 - By Simple Families

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Parenting an early bloomer comes with its own set of challenges. Those of us who have precocious children know this well. Today, we are discussing the ins and outs of early blooming from a child development perspective. And I'm sharing more about my personal experience parenting an early bloomer and being an early bloomer myself.

Early Bloomers - Episode Transcription

Hi there. It's Episode 175 and we're talking about Early Bloomers. Back in Episode 164 on the podcast, I interviewed Rich Karlgaard, the author of the book, Late Bloomers, and we talked at length about just that, late bloomers. As a mom myself, I have a late bloomer and an early bloomer and I think that early bloomers come with their own sets of challenges.

I recently had a request to do a podcast episode on early bloomers, which was kind of a no brainer since I'm parenting one and I was one/I'm one myself. In Episode 164, my guest Rich Karlgaard and I, discussed late blooming and what that means and how society views kids that bloom a little bit later. We all know that society pushes us to be better, faster, stronger, sooner. In many ways kids who reach their milestones later, and when I say milestones, I'm talking about anything from walking, talking, reading, finding their way in their career. Our kids that do this on a later, possibly slower timeline, they can sometimes end up feeling like they're not enough.

Kids Develop on Their Own Timelines

The truth is that we've known for quite some time from the
research and from clinical observations that children develop on different
timelines, and we can all nod and appreciate that but I'll tell you that when
you're the parent of an early bloomer, it's easier to accept this fact than
when you're the parent of a late bloomer. Now you might kick food that parents
of early bloomers have nothing to worry about, they can rest easy. And if
you're the parent of a late bloomer, you might feel a little bit envious of
these parents who have kids who are reaching their milestones earlier.

First let's talk about how we measure early blooming. Now, for the purposes of this podcast, we're talking about recognizing early blooming from a parent perspective. We're not talking about any kind of physical or psychological assessments, we're just talking about parental observations. And if you have come to the conclusion or maybe your pediatrician has hinted, or someone around you tells you that you have an early bloomer, a kid that's doing things ahead of the typical timeline, it's probably in some way, shape or form based on comparisons. Your kid is being compared to another child of a similar age and their abilities are being ranked.

Comparison is the Thief of Joy

And we all say we shouldn't compare our kids of course,
but it happens. We compare our kids to each other if we have more than one. We
compare our kids to the neighbors, to their cousins, to the other kids at
school. Although it's not ideal, it's almost impossible to avoid. If you think
you have an early bloomer, it's probably because you've read the books of when
kids are supposed to do things and your kid is exceeding the expectations.
You're probably comparing your child to other children that they're around, and
drawing your conclusions informally through that.

As parents who are sort of ranking our kids with a naked
eye, we're attracted to certain things at certain times. In the first year of
life, we're going to be ranking or comparing our kids based on their physical

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