Emotional intensity is a natural outcome of being a gifted person. Heightened sensitivity when managed effectively is a gift. Unfortunately, harnessing emotional intensity is so fraught with detours and road blocks that mishandled sensitivities often turn into aggressive or self-destructive enactments. Parents who can help their highly sensitive children deal with their strong and often conflicting emotions will raise children who are well-rounded individuals.











Dealing with a gifted child's emotional intensity is a daunting responsibility if you don't have a direction to take when your child has tantrums, gets isolated from friends and family, talks incessantly, gets so bored that he drives you crazy, or is disruptive at school or at home. A paradigm that was developed from an on-going four-year-old education and support group for parents of gifted children ranging in age from two to 15 has been implemented and includes the following elements.

1.    Accepting the reality of emotional intensity as a part of the gifted child's personality.
2.    Eliminating perfectionistic attitudes from home and school that escalate emotional intensity.
3.    Avoiding specific social emotional stress and situational stress triggers to hyper-sensitivity.
4.    In early stages, redirection or distraction are very positive solutions to tantrums and other symptoms of emotional intensity.
5.    Transitional objects such as favorite dolls, toys, and video and computer games can be used as calming objects during times that are stressful--- but not as a steady diet.
6.    Open communication between parent and child diffuses emotional intensity.
7.    Through an understanding of overidentification, a sense of separateness between parent and child also are needed.
8.    Positive parent--teacher interactions.
9.    Frustrations can be toned down by music and art classes and sports.
10.     When stressful on-going deep sensitivities are difficult to diminish there is a need for family counseling or psychotherapy.