I absolutely do not believe that "you have so much potential" is a positive message for NT people either. x.x

RT @The_Weed@twitter.com

Here’s why.

When the phrase “you have so much potential” is shared with a neurotypical kid, it is a message of hope. It’s an adult seeing a child who has the capacity to do great things if they follow certain steps and make certain choices. It’s nurturing. It’s lovely! /6

🐦🔗: twitter.com/The_Weed/status/15


Praising kids (or adults for that matter) for their accomplishments or their efforts is a compliment and a positive force. Telling them they have some nebulous inborn "potential" or "ability" just says "you deserve no credit for this and/or you're wasting an unearned gift."

I have no expertise on whether this is a particularly harsh message for ND people, but it ain't good for humans in general. Do not recommend, x_x

@Rowyn On a related note, "keep it up" is a nastily insidious one. It sounds encouraging on the surface, but what it's actually saying is, "it doesn't matter what doing that amazing thing cost you, it doesn't count unless you keep doing it forever."

@terrana I think this one is more context-dependent -- it's not *always* pernicious, although it certainly *can* be. Whereas "you have lots of potential" is pretty much always bad. x_x

@Rowyn adults who saw "potential" in us as a kid always always ended up being disappointed when we inevitably failed to live up to whatever weird culturally-mediated NT expectations they had arbitrarily decided to project onto a random ND child

@patchwork AFAIK, I'm neurotypical, and I was likewise a disappointment to every adult in my life during my childhood as well. -_-

@Rowyn I can't imagine ever telling someone "you have potential" instead of "you're really good at this" or "you learned that fast" etc.

I would tell someone that they're talented though, which is maybe the same issue. I don't consider talent to be an innate thing though so I don't mean it that way. But others might take it that way.

@robotsneedhugs Yeah, in American English at least "talent" usually means "naturally good." "Skilled" is better for communicating "you have worked hard and have become good at [doing thing]."

@Rowyn Yeah, I'll try to start using that. That's the exact definition I mean when I say talented, but I don't think it's a common view.

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