Let me preface this by saying that my IQ is 143 and as a child I was kind of a bigshot with most of the adults in my life because of this genius status. I don’t want to brag but it’s all true and completely relevant with what I have to talk about. I’m 100% sure that all parents in the country have this desire to have a super smart son or daughter and the lengths that we go through to achieve this desire is evident from the various products and programs that are supposed to enhance mental ability even in unborn children. There are Mozart records for pregnant women, milk products that beat steroids in chemical content, books entitled ‘Analytic Geometry for Toddlers’, and sperm banks boasting swimmer specimen from Hawking. Okay the last two are fake, but you get the point?
In a previous post, I mentioned a Grade Five (I can say Fifth Grade, but where’s the Filipino-ness in that?) Math textbook discussing fractions in a ridiculously confusing manner. I’m a college senior and I didn’t get the explanation the first time I read it, what chance could an eleven year-old have? Anyway, I found out who the authors were: Adela C. Villamayor and Amelia D. Celeridad – Wright. They were supposedly bigshots in the academic world and there’s a tradition, a kind of rite of passage, among academic bigshots to write a textbook at least once in your life/career. I’m sure that was their intention in writing Math for Life 5, if their real intention was for the benefit of young learners everywhere, they would’ve done a better job than the garbage they published. But I ramble.
Parents put a lot of effort into making sure that their children got what they deserve, as long as it fits their budgets. When asked why they’re sending their children to an advanced preschool classroom, they invoke the age-old parental excuse, “We just want the best for our children.” What about what their kids want? Did they even consider that? The world is a horrible place to live in and making sure that your kid is smart enough to figure this harsh fact at a very young age is the most cruel thing a parent can do to their child. I know I wouldn’t do that to my hypothetical future son/daughter. I saw this documentary in QTV once entitled, “Growing Up Gifted” and it was very informative about the topic. Unfortunately, it didn’t show the downside of being an insufferable know-it-all.
The world is a horrible place to live in and making sure that your kid is smart enough to figure this harsh fact at a very young age is the most cruel thing a parent can do to their child.
Firstly, decision making gets really hard because knowing a lot doesn’t always mean that you get to make the best decisions in life. If you’re deciding between two really close choices, you’d really twist your brains to figure out which one you really want. If you chose Option A, you know exactly what you’re getting and what you’re not getting. You’d feel fine about your choice but then there’s a part of you that’s going to kill your soul slowly for not knowing what it would be like had you chosen Option B.
Then there’s the endless paranoia that creeps into your waking thoughts about the things you know and how it affects yourself and other people in their daily lives. And when you’re in some sort of trouble, this paranoia is magnified into colossal proportions because you’ve figured out exactly what’s waiting for you on the other side before you can even open the door to face it. Ultimately, you’d get chronic episodes of severe depression because of this and you’d be technically disabled for the rest of the said episode’s duration.
Then there’s the constant irritation you’d feel towards the stupider people around you day in and day out. You’d feel annoyed at your boss for making a very stupid decision that you know would lead your officemates and yourself into some sort of predicament, and then afterwards you’d beat yourself up for it because there was absolutely nothing you could’ve done to stop it. Or you’d feel annoyed at your friends for always making the same mistakes over and over again despite the fact that you’ve already given them sound advice about it several times in the past. Or you’d feel annoyed at your family whenever they get the urge to do embarrassing stuff in public especially when you’re with them.
For the parents out there who want a genius baby, I suggest you reconsider your wishes. If you ask me, it’s better to have a hardworking child than a smart one. But who am I, right? I’m just a self-proclaimed genius who sees too far ahead for his own good.