The boy who knew too much: a child prodigy

This is the true story of scientific child prodigy, and former baby genius, Ainan Celeste Cawley, written by his father. It is the true story, too, of his gifted brothers and of all the Cawley family. I write also of child prodigy and genius in general: what it is, and how it is so often neglected in the modern world. As a society, we so often fail those we should most hope to see succeed: our gifted children and the gifted adults they become. Site Copyright: Valentine Cawley, 2006 +

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Aspirational adoption: mothers who want more.

Today, someone arrived on my blog with the search terms: "unwanted babies prodigy". I was stunned that those three words should be together. Here, quite clearly, it seemed, was a potential adoptive parent, seeking to adopt a prodigious baby. It gave me quite an eerie feel to read that aspiration.

Those search terms made me wonder what adoptive parents seek in a child. Do most of them just want to adopt a healthy baby to love and to nurture and to raise instead of one they cannot have themselves? Do they adopt out of a sense of charity, to give a child a home and family, who otherwise would have nothing but an orphanage? How many adoptive parents out there are like my searcher: seeking a superbaby, for whatever reason they might have for wanting one?

Is my superbaby seeking searcher simply out for prestige? Is their goal to become a parent with a child to boast of, to outdo all the other children in the school? Is their urge to adopt not one of love of another, but love of the self? The whole situation struck me as most curious. It never occurred to me that the motivation for adoption, for a parent, might be one of status, social positioning or some ill-defined prize.

I wonder if you, my reader, have any anecdotes of aspirational adoptions, as I call them: adoptions in which the motivation is to adopt a special child to bring the special kind of attention and glamour to a family that is attendant on such a child. It would be most interesting to hear.

Then again, how would you feel if you learnt that a prodigious baby was up for adoption? Would you adopt such a child? Would you seek out such a child for adoption? Would you be able to take on the special responsibilities that come from having to meet the needs of a child with special educational and social requirements? Or would you shy away from such a responsibility? Would you realize that it might bring demands you might not be able to meet? All your thoughts and observations would be welcome - particularly those that are from the heart, or a frank mind. Thanks.

(If you would like to learn more of Ainan Celeste Cawley, a scientific child prodigy, aged eight years and seven months, or his gifted brothers, Fintan, five years exactly, and Tiarnan, twenty-eight months, please go to: I also write of gifted education, IQ, intelligence, the Irish, the Malays, Singapore, College, University, Chemistry, Science, genetics, left-handedness, precocity, child prodigy, child genius, baby genius, adult genius, savant, wunderkind, wonderkind, genio, гений ребенок prodigy, genie, μεγαλοφυία θαύμα παιδιών, bambino, kind.

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 12:18 AM 


Blogger Christine said...

I do think too many parents or prospective parents of gifted children don't realise their social and emotional issues. Some parents show their children off. Others even treat them badly and tell them they are weird.
If I were going to adopt a gifted child, I would prefer one that has similar interests to mine. I would relate to the child better and would be able to help it.

6:57 AM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

You are wise to seek similarity to the child - for in that, a bond can be found and understanding formed.

Yes. Some parents do treat gifted children badly by thinking them "weird"...I have noted this behaviour in some.

Adoption is a tricky issue, even more tricky than parenting usually is.

Thanks for your comment.

10:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This reminds me of the blind Korean girl who was given up by her birth parents (not hard to guess why) and later adopted by a wheelchair bound man and his infertile wife. This blind girl later turn out to be extremely gifted at the piano and is now known as "The New Mozart".

You can google Yoo Ye-eun on youtube to watch her videos.

11:10 AM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Thanks for the tip.

I wonder if her real parents know how she turned out? That would be sobering moment. I think they missed out on raising a wonderful child.

11:36 AM  

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