Dear Abby: I am a 14-year-old female from the West Coast. I am home-schooled and don’t have many friends because I score high in tests, meaning I retain more information than the average person.
On the rare occasion that I mingle with children my own age, they call me unpleasant names, play pranks on me and otherwise torture me. I had to change my emergency cellphone number and start using my sister’s because there have been so many immature and insulting prank calls.
I hate it. I can’t help that I am smart, and I refuse to degrade myself by dumbing down my actions and speech because they can’t handle their insecurities.
Being “different” isn’t easy, and clearly you are very intelligent. But you and your parents should understand that crank calls are not “pranks” — they are a form of bullying and should have been reported when they happened.
Most parents who home-school also network with other home-schooling parents so their children can socialize with peers. If your parents haven’t done this, I recommend you discuss it with them. You might also meet more intellectually advanced young people if you joined special-interest groups for older students.
Your high IQ might be less threatening to the students who have given you trouble if you volunteer to tutor some of them who need help with their schoolwork. (Just don’t fall into the trap of doing it FOR them.)