The trouble is, many of us have bought into the idea that every child has a “hidden talent,” Professor Doherty said, and that we are failing our children if we don’t do everything possible to bring it to light.
There are certainly good reasons to offer our children some of these experiences, but there are more negative ones as well, if we rely on them to make us feel like good parents, or if we think that arming them with a myriad of skills can guarantee their later success in life.
So why the rush? In some cases, it’s hard for children to join sports teams at 12 if every other child has been playing since, say, age 5. But many of us will pick up skills and, yes, even passions, well into our adult years that never manifested themselves when we were younger.
From Family Happiness and the Overbooked Child, The New York Times, Aug 12, 2011