Childhood can be difficult. Being a highly sensitive or gifted child can add another layer of difficulties to overcome, individually, and as a family.
I have a special interest in working with highly sensitive children (HSP), and gifted children. Working through and reflecting on my personal experiences as gifted and highly sensitive helped develop a greater awareness of the importance of early support and intervention.
There are many struggles that HSP and gifted individuals have to face, and being young makes it even scarier, frustrating, or confusing. Curiosity may be mistaken as showing off or being defiant in the classroom.
It doesn't make sense that people don't want to talk about substance, meaning, or learn. Obtaining knowledge and discovering one's purpose may be something that peers, schools, and perhaps even family members might not completely comprehend for someone so young.
Some gifted or highly sensitive children may also have learning differences or sensitivities that affect their abilities to focus, learn, or behave "like everyone else." They may start feeling like aliens in their own home or school.
Some possible traits of gifted and/or highly sensitive children:
- wearing socks inside out, cutting tags off clothes, preference for specific clothing and fabrics
- heightened senses like hearing or smell, where a child can feel overwhelmed or frustrated (ex: hearing fluorescent lights, feeling agitated around high-pitched noises)
- asks thought-provoking questions, insights, or has mature observations compared to peers, seems like an "old soul"
- experiences emotions very deeply, perhaps prolonged and intense
- has difficulties with changes and perfectionism, which can lead to shutting down or tantrums
- speaks in complex sentences and vocabulary for their age
- learns things quickly (if 2e or experiential learner, this is not always the case)
- has a strong sense of justice and morality early on
- may have difficulty connecting with peers the same age
- Links for more traits on Highly Sensitive Children and Gifted Children
It can feel terrible to be compared to others who are "successful" or overwhelming when others have high expectations to perform because of labels and scores on tests.
I can offer opportunities for gifted and highly sensitive children to be who they are. It may be refreshing to have an adult who can explore boundless curiosities with them, while offering practical skills to survive in the real world. It will be a long journey for young people who think and feel differently from their peers. I can help gifted and sensitive children:
- begin to accept their differences
- develop social skills with peers
- work through unrealistic goals of perfection
- identify parts of their authentic selves
- learn leadership skills
- improve connection with family
Call me at (949) 381-1894 for a free phone consultation.
Look forward to hearing from you,
Please note that highly sensitive children are not all gifted, and not all gifted children are highly sensitive; rather, it is a spectrum of being where nuanced variations per individual exist. If you are looking for assessments or therapy for your child, I can help find referrals or resources.