Parent Groups

Decoding your Complex Child/Teen are discussion and support groups especially for parents of gifted, 2e, or QuASIE kids or teens. We gather on a regular basis to share ideas, get support, learn more about how to help our unusual children, connect with other parents, solve problems, take a break from the intensity of parenting, discuss topics of common interest and get help with specific concerns.
Anyone who is needing some help in their experience of parenting their puggle is welcome. Read on for details, and how to sign up.

Why a group?

Parenting a puggle is challenging — not only do they not come with an instruction manual, but you frequently can’t just copy what all the other parents are doing, because their children may not be puggles, or may not be the same kind of puggle. It’s stressful, isolating and intense. Coming together with expert facilitators and other parents who are facing similar challenges gives a parent an opportunity to get validation for their struggles, collect new ideas and finally feel like they are not alone in this endeavor. Additionally, it’s a very cost-effective way to access professional support.

Who is eligible?

Parents are placed in groups based mostly on their childrens’ ages. Decoding your Complex Child covers toddler through around 10-12, whereas Decoding your Complex Teen runs from around age 10-12 on up through young adulthood. If your child is in the cracks between the two groups, we’ll chat together and figure out where the fit is best. Note: “diagnosed” giftedness is never a requirement for participation in any Gifted Matters program.

What is the format?

We meet weekly for 1 1/2 hours, for six weeks, either in the office in Cupertino, or online, using Zoom. The groups are limited to 8 participants, and they are closed, meaning that you will see the same group of people every week, and once the group begins, no new members will be added until the next six-week session. This lets participants get to know each other and connect better. Groups are offered year-round, based on participant interest and facilitator availability.

What happens in group?

Don’t worry – no past life regression or pounding furniture with tennis rackets or primal screaming. These groups are about discussing concerns, exchanging ideas, and getting support. Big feelings may come up from time to time, but anything that cannot be handled in group will be appropriately referred to private therapy, either with a Gifted Matters staff member,  or with another professional.

Each meeting has a topic to help focus our conversation. We begin with a check-in, to introduce ourselves and to see if anyone has a pressing question or issue they came with that night. We focus on the immediate needs of group participants first, and then spend the rest of our time focusing on the topic.

What are the topics?

Topics are generated by group members and by the facilitators, so as to be certain that the areas that are covered are relevant to participants. Past topics have inlcuded:

  • Handling meltdowns
  • Finding the right school
  • Social skills/bullying
  • Deschooling gently
  • Parental self-care
  • Being gifted raising a gifted kid
  • Intro to the neurology of the gifted
  • Mindfulness and metacognition
  • Perfectionism
  • Anxiety
  • Transitioning to adulthood
  • Emotional resilience

What does it cost?

The fee for the six-week session is $300, payable at the time the reservation is made. No refunds are given for missed meetings, but if there are fewer than six people signed up for a session, it will be cancelled. In that instance, fees will be refunded or kept on account, according to the preferences of the participant.

Where does it meet?

All in-person group meetings are held at the Gifted Matters office in Cupertino:
21710 Stevens Creek Boulevard, Suite 120
Virtual groups use the Zoom platform.

How many people in a group?

Groups are a maximum of 8 people.

How do I sign up?

It’s easy. Just click this link: Parent Group Interest Form, and submit the completed form. You will be contacted within a few days regarding setting up an intake phone call with a staff member, so that we can be sure you are matched up with a group appropriate to your needs.

What about confidentiality?

Everyone who participates signs a group agreement, which includes a description of the expectations of confidentiality. In order for the group to serve its purpose, participants need to feel safe to share their worries, show their imperfections and be vulnerable — what happens in the group room stays in the group room, even if you already know some of the other participants, and have a social relationship with them outside. It’s particularly important that we honor the confidences of others in the group, as the world of gifted/2e and/or homeschooling in Silicon Valley is very small.

Anything else I need to know?

Several people have asked if we can coordinate childcare. Unfortunately, Gifted Matters does no have the resources to manage this. We understand how difficult it can be to find and arrange for childcare for our puggles — in fact we’ve toyed with the idea of creating a referral service just for childcare for kids like ours. If any group participants want to pool childcare for their families, that is certainly an option, but it would need to be an outside agreement.
We at Gifted Matters  are excited to be helping create a community, and hope that it is helpful in your journey as a parent of a puggle! We also thank you in advance for what your participation will contribute to the group — this is a gift that we can give each other. If you have any other questions, please don’t hesitate to call at 408-375-9635, or email at