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    #76497 - 05/20/10 02:51 PM A warning from a gifted adult.
    ACh Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 05/20/10
    Posts: 20
    Hi. I'm a gifted adult.

    I was identified as profoundly gifted as a child; the reports said anywhere from 162 to as high as 'well above 180'.

    Not to scare you too much, but I have a warning for the parents of gifted children:

    It is profoundly tough for us to be alive and cope with the rest of the world.

    I have my niche. I'm in science; I'm presently an undergrad, doing very well (high GPA, frequently on the Dean's List), and on the way to graduate school for neurobiology or genetics.

    I have found my place in the world.

    Nevertheless, here is a selection of what your children may encounter:
    - the pain that comes from floating lonely in a sea of stupidity or ignorance with very little company
    - the isolation
    - the anger at the lack of nuance in the thought processes of the people around them
    - the impatience with the slow thought processes of others despite frequent practice at being patient
    - the fear of the possibility of the modern version of angry pitchfork-bearing peasants running after them for saying something that makes them look stupid or challenges their worldview
    - the fact that the vast majority of people in the world are, quite plainly, morons. If you read the news, you'll know what I mean.

    The mere fact that I have found a place where I belong and that I can achieve what I want to achieve is what keeps me alive. If this were not the case, I would have killed myself a long time ago from despair.
    Dissuade your children, if they are inclined that way, from being one of those socially maladjusted, emotionally disturbed and bitter weirdos who does menial work, has to join a high IQ society or something to get any intellectual release (fun fact: most actual members of Mensa are a total pain in the @$$ to be around), and becomes totally insane - I hate those people, successful gifted people hate those people, and those people probably hate themselves. I had to work hard to get where I am and to be on the road to success. I had to grit my teeth, study hard, and get treated for depression that lasted from as far back as I remember to the age of 20. (I'm now about 22.) Work as hard as you can - and it is bitterly hard work; my parents worked VERY HARD to even give me the much-less-than-perfect environment I grew up in - to make sure your child succeeds in life.

    This world is poorly equipped to deal with us (I have chosen not to have children partially because any child I would have would go through many of the same things I did, considering the heritability of intelligence, and I don't think I'd be able to forgive myself if I had a child who had such a high likelihood of going through it).

    Edited by ACh (05/20/10 02:55 PM)

    #76499 - 05/20/10 02:53 PM Re: A warning from a gifted adult. [Re: ACh]
    ACh Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 05/20/10
    Posts: 20
    I have to add that no matter how gifted your kid is, they won't amount to anything unless they have drive, motivation, and discipline.

    #76505 - 05/20/10 05:09 PM Re: A warning from a gifted adult. [Re: ACh]
    chris1234 Offline

    Registered: 06/27/08
    Posts: 1891
    ACh - sorry you have had such a rough road, I think many folks here can sympathize; my ds8, though not pg, is gifted enough and quirky enough to be having quite the time fitting in. So much of what he's gone through has been familiar territory for me, and I think it is a main theme of this forum to work on social concerns, keeping kids on a good track with their self esteem and looking out for a child's happiness always above academic achievement. (Long term goals that sometimes seem very hard to achieve)
    Anyway, I guess I wasn't too excited to hear all the bitterness in your tone, calling folks 'morons' doesn't float too many boats around here smile
    ... but I sort of understand you are coming from a situation, by the simple fact of being a kid, where you had very little control and that can make for bitterness. I do hope that as you move through your schooling and career in science that you will shed some of that and begin to see the good in most folks. Welcome, I hope you find even more of what you are looking for, and achieve to your utmost potential!

    #76509 - 05/20/10 06:41 PM Re: A warning from a gifted adult. [Re: ACh]
    Cricket2 Offline

    Registered: 05/11/09
    Posts: 2172
    Loc: Colorado
    Originally Posted By: ACh
    ...(fun fact: most actual members of Mensa are a total pain in the @$$ to be around)...I hate those people, successful gifted people hate those people, and those people probably hate themselves...

    Ouch! As a Mensa member myself, I'd have to say that I have met a few Mensans who are oddballs around whom I don't necessarily care to hang, however I have also met a lot of Mensans who are really interesting people and they aren't all bitter people who work menial jobs.

    Yes, gifted people can be more prone to existential depression. I had plenty of challenging years myself. I don't think that finding part of one's social circle in a high IQ group indicates the inability to interact with people outside of that group, though.
    Study Strategies for Accelerated Learners

    #76511 - 05/20/10 07:10 PM Re: A warning from a gifted adult. [Re: Cricket2]
    Zanzi Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/15/10
    Posts: 23
    Thanks ACh. I'd venture to say that 22 is still pretty young. You may choose to have kids after all. I know it's taken me a long time to find my place in the world that most people feel at home in (still not quite sorted) but having a child has provided me with a deep well-spring from which to understand and grow from my own upbringing.

    I've never been tested but my son has, as PG, and I'm watching him do many of the things I did as a child. Living in a non-Western country (India), for some time, was I think a valuable experience. Western society is very conformist and mechanized. Most people freak out if you start to question the mechanism. Being a stranger in a strange land can give you the freedom to be different because that's what people expect from you.

    Edited by Zanzi (05/20/10 07:14 PM)

    #76512 - 05/20/10 07:43 PM Re: A warning from a gifted adult. [Re: Zanzi]
    no5no5 Offline

    Registered: 04/02/09
    Posts: 529
    Hm. Well, I also tested PG as a child, and I have to say that I disagree with much of what you wrote. Perhaps I might have agreed with more of it at 22. I have come to see that though I am faster, I am not better, and I am as flawed as (and not more flawed than) any other person. smile

    I hope that you will overcome your challenges, and discover that a happy, fulfilling life is just as possible for you as it is for anyone else.

    #76514 - 05/20/10 08:10 PM Re: A warning from a gifted adult. [Re: no5no5]
    amazedmom Offline

    Registered: 08/24/09
    Posts: 383
    Loc: Edge of the world
    Hi Ach-

    I just want to say it is nice to hear from you and I am sorry for what you have gone through. I can identify with much of what you speak of. I was identified as EG as a child, and well I remember the loneliness. It was difficult and still is at times. I remember my early 20's being very difficult, as I found myself in college and gradschool but still feeling alone and not understood. I was lucky, I had very supportive parents and was given educational opportunities that allowed me to be around others who were HG to PG.

    Anyway, I just want to tell you I understand the feelings you have as I have been there myself, but luckily today see myself as others have said before me as flawed, but not more or less than other people. Good luck to you smile
    DD6- DYS
    Homeschooling on a remote island at the edge of the world.

    #76517 - 05/20/10 08:44 PM Re: A warning from a gifted adult. [Re: ACh]
    Dandy Offline

    Registered: 08/12/08
    Posts: 574
    Originally Posted By: ACh
    This world is poorly equipped to deal with us (I have chosen not to have children partially because any child I would have would go through many of the same things I did, considering the heritability of intelligence, and I don't think I'd be able to forgive myself if I had a child who had such a high likelihood of going through it).

    Really? I would hope that you would be able to employ your profound gifts and *think* of a way to help your children succeed, whether geniuses or not. Besides, just because they might pop out with some of your genius doesn't mean that the genetic material contributed by the other parent wouldn't have a chance to balance your "curse," right?

    I've long been mystified by the thinking that one's genetic material is so wickedly awesome that humanity would be best served by denying the potential contribution. It sounds more like you've denied your offspring (and humanity) one heck of an opportunity to benefit from all this chromosomal goodness.

    My sibling, with scores comparable to yours, had a similar outlook when he was young... and thank goodness his animal drive to reproduce overrode his angsty attitude, as the world has since been blessed with one phenomenally capable pediatrician and an extremely competent teacher.
    Being offended is a natural consequence of leaving the house. - Fran Lebowitz

    #76518 - 05/20/10 08:50 PM Re: A warning from a gifted adult. [Re: Dandy]
    inky Offline

    Registered: 10/10/08
    Posts: 1299
    Wish I'd known about Dabrowski's Theory of Positive Disintegration when I was 22.
    “we observe above average abilities in many areas, emotional richness and depth, and multiple and strong manifestations of psychic overexcitability. In individuals so endowed one may observe from childhood difficulties of adjustment, serious developmental crises, psychoneurotic processes, and tendency toward disintegration of lower levels of functioning and reaching toward higher levels of functioning. This, however, does not occur without disturbances and disharmony with their external environment and within their internal environment. Feelings of otherness and strangeness are not uncommon. We find this in gifted children, creative and prominent personalities, men of genius, i.e. those who contribute new discoveries and new values.” (Dabrowski, 1996, p.22)

    #76520 - 05/21/10 06:20 AM Re: A warning from a gifted adult. [Re: inky]
    kcab Offline

    Registered: 10/02/07
    Posts: 1603
    Loc: Sparta, apparently
    Well, I've had these thoughts at one time or another, though I doubt my IQ is as high. You're fortunate in that you've gotten help for depression already, it took me somewhat longer to reach that point.

    I find that I wonder about your educational path, ACh. I'm guessing no academic acceleration, or not much, since you're an undergrad at 22. Is that accurate?

    Thanks for any thoughts/experiences you wish to share.

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