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    preslee1031's Avatar
    preslee1031 Posts: 2, Reputation: 1
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    #1

    Aug 14, 2008, 04:36 PM
    How do I know if my child is gifted?
    I have a question about my 6 year old Son. We have been thinking he is gifted for about a year or so. His preschool teacher last year had some concerns about him being a perfectionist and how he wouldn't try to sound out and spell words himself, but would help other children sound them out and spell them. He also, would draw pictures and keep erasing them over and over and say how "bad" they look..
    Also, he has major obsessions that worry me.
    He is obsessed with freshwater fish and Baseball. They are not "normal" obsessions. He will be out by the pond the ENTIRE day fishing, talking about fish, drawing pictures of fish, writing down their weights and how long they are etc. He gets VERY frustrated and upset if he wants to talk to us about fish and we aren't as excited as HE thinks we should be. Honestly, I'm not sure I could ever be excited enough to make him happy. It's very exhausting. If he catches a fish he is very concerned with it's well being. He also says to me often that he doesn't think I'm as excited as I should be about the fish he caught... He stays up most of the night talking to me about his obsessions, about fish he caught when he was 4 etc..
    Also, he is super sensitive, bursting in to tears at the smallest things. If he and his sister get in to a fight about something small he automatically acts as if the world is ending and he cries. He always seems frustrated with things especially if he is trying to get us to understand something he is saying... He is very compassionate toward animals and bugs. If there is a fly in the house he won't let anyone hurt it he catches it and takes it outside.
    That's really just the beginning.
    He is very critical of people who don't do things the way he thinks they should. He criticizes his friends when they play baseball and he is also very critical of me when I play catch with him... He is very hard on himself as well saying things like "I'm the worst kid in the world"
    He is very in to number and math, but doesn't have much of an interest in reading yet..
    If I ask him to practice writing his name he tells me that he "already knows how and doesn't want to" but if I get the math flash cards out he is so excited to do them. He is getting ready to start Kindergarten this month and I'm worried about how this year will go and if in fact he is gifted how will he do...
    Giftedness runs in my family. My Dad and my Niece are both gifted. I guess my main question is if he sounds gifted or if there is something else going on.
    Thank you for your time.:confused:
    Alty's Avatar
    Alty Posts: 28,318, Reputation: 5972
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    #2

    Aug 14, 2008, 04:42 PM
    Has he been tested of ADHD? He may well be gifted, but his obsessivness sounds more like ADHD to me. Of course we cannot diagnose this over the internet, only a doctor can, and it's hard to diagnose this particular disorder.

    I would have him checked and see what the doctor says or recommends.

    Good luck.
    Tralyn's Avatar
    Tralyn Posts: 230, Reputation: 17
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    #3

    Aug 14, 2008, 04:45 PM
    Maybe some OCD - you should have him checked out at the doctor. I think ADD and ADHD are too often diagnosed in children. The fact that he focuses on specific things makes me think it's Obsessive, but there could be other issues, you shouldn't delay on getting him in.
    ylaira's Avatar
    ylaira Posts: 1,193, Reputation: 118
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    #4

    Aug 14, 2008, 04:51 PM
    He sounds mature for a 6 year old. It is very possible that he is gifted since it runs in your family. However, I am concerned with his hypersensitivity and obsessiveness. Take him to the doctor. I agree with Tralyn that it is more of OCD. It's hard to be with people with OCD and it may result a lot of relationship conflicts while growing up.They will run a couple of test to confirm this and for early guidance.
    Luv2Dance's Avatar
    Luv2Dance Posts: 56, Reputation: 7
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    #5

    Aug 14, 2008, 05:02 PM
    Hi!! :) Well, word of advice, flag this out to your Kindergarten teacher ASAP. As a K teacher, we notice these things right away... but we look for them, and get rolling with them if parents notify us off hand. I'd also notify the school Psychologist, and ask if he/she would pop in the classroom to observe your son. I'm not a doctor and can't make a diagnosis, and I'd need a lot more description on your son, but there might be some OCD there... maybe something else... maybe a small behavior modification in school (that you could use at home too) could even help your son overcome his obsessions. As for him always saying things like "I'm the worst kid in the world." I would just constantly give him positive praise for good things he does. At teacher stores, online, and I think Office Max might even have them... they sell little rewards... you can write him out rewards for accomplishments. Hey, you can even print them out on WORD I believe. Try not to focus on the negative behavior and comments. It might be attention seeking... so when he says "Im the worse boy"... say "You did so awesome when you hit that homerun" don't feed into him by saying "oh no your not....youre such a ggood kid...".. just turn it around with a positive about him. BEST OF LUCK to you and your cutie!! :)
    preslee1031's Avatar
    preslee1031 Posts: 2, Reputation: 1
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    #6

    Aug 14, 2008, 05:08 PM
    He has never had any type of behavioral problems in school. He was in preschool for two years and he was always very attentive. The teacher had a concern about the perfectionism but not behavior.
    As far as OCD.. I was always under the impression that OCD delt with worrying about things happening, germs etc. I know that what he has are obsessions, but I don't think the descriptions I read about OCD fit him.
    I appreciate all of your answers...
    Thank you!
    Tralyn's Avatar
    Tralyn Posts: 230, Reputation: 17
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    #7

    Aug 14, 2008, 05:16 PM
    I have a friend who has OCD with vacuuming.. can't stand a dirty floor, vacuums obsessively, compulsively! :) Best of luck. I do think his comments about being the worst kid ever are pretty dramatic, this might be a bigger issue, might not. I'd still check it out.
    ylaira's Avatar
    ylaira Posts: 1,193, Reputation: 118
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    #8

    Aug 14, 2008, 05:16 PM
    Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a chronic anxiety disorder most commonly characterized by obsessive, distressing, intrusive thoughts and related compulsions (tasks or "rituals") which attempt to neutralize the obsessions. OCD is distinguished from other types of anxiety, including the routine tension and stress that appear throughout life. The phrase "obsessive-compulsive" has become part of the English lexicon, and is often used in an informal or caricatured manner to describe someone who is meticulous, perfectionistic, absorbed in a cause, or otherwise fixated on something or someone.[1] Although these signs are often present in OCD, a person who exhibits them does not necessarily have OCD, and may instead have obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) or some other condition.

    Diagnostic criteria

    To be diagnosed with OCD, a person must have either obsessions or compulsions alone, or obsessions and compulsions, according to the DSM-IV-TR diagnostic criteria. The Quick Reference to the diagnostic criteria from DSM-IV-TR (2000) states several characteristics of obsessions and compulsions:[2]

    Obsessions

    Recurrent and persistent thoughts, impulses, or images that are experienced as intrusive and inappropriate and that cause marked anxiety or distress.
    The thoughts, impulses, or images are not simply excessive worries about real-life problems.
    The person attempts to ignore or suppress such thoughts, impulses, or images, or to neutralize them with some other thought or action.
    The person recognizes that the obsessional thoughts, impulses, or images are a product of his or her own mind, and are not based in reality.


    Compulsions


    Repetitive behaviours or mental acts that the person feels driven to perform in response to an obsession, or according to rules that must be applied rigidly.
    The behaviours or mental acts are aimed at preventing or reducing distress or preventing some dreaded event or situation; however, these behaviours or mental acts are not actually connected to the issue, or they are excessive.
    In addition to these criteria, at some point during the course of the disorder, the individual must realize that his/her obsessions or compulsions are unreasonable or excessive. Moreover, the obsessions or compulsions must be time-consuming (taking up more than one hour per day), cause distress, or cause impairment in social, occupational, or school functioning.[2] OCD often causes feelings similar to those of depression.


    Obsessive-compulsive disorder - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    asking's Avatar
    asking Posts: 2,673, Reputation: 660
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    #9

    Aug 14, 2008, 05:20 PM
    He has traits that both my sons have, the kindness towards animals, the focused interest on things. He sounds bright and a little compulsive. I think most of this sounds wonderful. Caring about others is a GOOD trait. It's good that he wants to talk to you, but I would encourage you to set clear bed time limits. I'd guess he's keeping you up half the night talking because he doesn't want to go to bed and he's discovered that you'll give in because you don't want to stifle his briilance. Bed time was never negotiable in my house and I have no regrets! (My sons are now 15 and 19.)

    If he's having a hard time getting your attention during the day because you are focused on his sister, give him some time every day where it's just the two of you--10 to 30 minutes. But don't let him monopolize you to his sister's exclusion. That's not good for either of them (or for you!).

    I would only worry that he's too concerned with success--not being open to learning something from you and insisting he already knows something is not healthy. Does someone in the household criticize people for not doing things right the first time or every time? My kids' dad would not let them just be kids. So, for example, if I wanted to let them do the dishes when they were little, he would stop them and take over because they weren't "doing it right." My older one especially is afraid of trying new things and failing. He can express this and he understands it's not helping him, but it's a deep seated thing he can't overcome easily now as an adult.

    Speaking as a parent of bright kids, I would not recommend trying to figure out whether your son is "gifted" or not just yet. He can be gifted later. Right now, he needs to learn how to function at school and go to bed when he's told to. :)

    I agree with everyone else here too pretty much.
    Enjoy him! He sounds like a sweetheart. But he needs clear limits, not more space to take over you life. Hope this makes sense.

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