The need for friendship is a powerful force in human relationships. We seek friends to fulfill a number of intellectual and social-emotional needs including the need for companionship, affection, physical and emotional support, and intellectual stimulation. An additional need, however, is self-validation; although we may value various friends for their different views of the world and although we may enjoy friendly debate and even occasional argument with them, we feel a greater sense of self-acceptance when we have friends who share, and endorse, our own fundamental beliefs, opinions, and values. Intellectually gifted children can experience difficulties in finding friends who share their abilities and interests. This entry outlines the influence of social-emotional maturity, influences on friendship choice such as shared interests, levels of giftedness and ...

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