Well, it does.
It hurts when you're hearing it and it hurts when you're the one giving it out. I upset someone today I expect. I told them their child wasn't special. That she wasn't super intelligent or anything special like that, she was just a normal little girl, average achievement in most areas, but very behind on her reading.
I know that my son is special - I'm his mother. I know that academically he is quite bright, and that he has a very good reading age that is around 2 years over his real age. I'm also realistic and know that when he is 20, and his peers are 20, that having a superb reading age at 6 won't matter lol! He is a confident and expressive communicator, but that's because he's encouraged to be so, he's asked for his opinion, and always has been. He lives with adults who respect him for who he is, not just as a child, but as a small person, but he lives secure within the boundaries that exist and are unshakable. Like a small puppy he runs up to the boundaries and snaps at them every now and again, but he loves to know that they are there, firmly, to keep everyone happy and safe and maturing well.
But I am under no misapprehensions that he is a genius. He is a gorgeously normal child, with an encouraging and supportive family who value education for it's own sake, as opposed to glorified daycare that should produce, through some kind of magical osmosis, a literate and numerate child.
We are all so lucky. That truth does *not* hurt.
The truth that I should be writing reports?
Darnation, that hurts, aches and bites!