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Gifted.

We got the news yesterday that our son tested into the gifted program in school. Both of his older siblings were also in the gifted program, so we're not too surpised.

But now he's been tagged. Marked. Different.

Of course, I'm happy that we're in a school system that has special programs for kids of all types. What I'm not happy about is the stigma that the special students get. At that young of an age, kids are just looking for any non-conformists so they can start crushing them early.

Okay, so maybe I've got some issues I need to work out. :)

I just remember the kids in grade school being so fucking visicous. Even the smallest bit of non-conformity was a good excuse for the teasing and the hitting. I was really bad at conforming. Exhibit One. Exhibit Two. Grade school was too much pain.

I know, I know. Projecting my fears onto the CHIL-DRUN is a Bad Thing. Emotional scars run deep.

I'm sure he'll be fine. He's extremely well adjusted. He gets that from his mother. He's also artistic. He gets that from his mother. He's got a logical mind. He gets that from me. We just have to watch him and make sure he gets to be a child first, and gifted second. It worked for the other two.

Yes, I did worry this much about the other two.

ObRant: I used to work at a toy store. About once a week, we would get a customer who was looking for an educational toy. The story was always the same.

"My niece/nephew is having a birthday and they are extremely intelligent. Do you have any eductional toys for them?"

My answer was always the same. "Educational toys are for kids who need educating. If your niece/nephew is already smart, why don't you get them a fun toy instead?"

Blank stare. "But, they don't need fun toys. They need to develop and grow!"

Sigh. "Well, how about Lego? I hear that's a good creative toy."

"Perhaps you misunderstand me, my niece/nephew is extremely smart and has to have an educational toy!"

"Aisle three, halfway down on the left."

Most people just didn't get it. Most smart kids are tired of getting educational toys. They just want to be kids. Kids need toys. Playtime is important.

And for the record, I don't consider Lego an educational toy. It is definately a creative toy. For me, it's more of a lifestyle.