Are there certain IQ tests for the anxious, perfectionst, or highly gifted child? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 10-14-2011, 05:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My 7 year old daughter is quite "quirky". We went to a fancy educational pychologist for testing, but she has such anxiety that we had no idea how she did. The official results were that her verbal iq was over 150 and there was no official iq assigned. We have discovered a bad fit with this practitioner and are seeking help with her anxiety and perfectionism. She hits herself but answers well when she is pushed to advanced level questions. She refuses to write, continually erasing every line she makes until the paper rips and she throws herself down. The original educational psychologist suggested that she was manipulating us to avoid work and that I should take parenting classes because I am too permissive. I have seen her breakdown in activities she chooses so I have trouble believing it's avoidance behavior. I have been searching for help (maybe with occupational therapy) for her writing. As I searched her high verbal iq, her anxiety and perfectionism, your forum came up. I'm looking for any and all advice right now. Thanks :)

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#2 of 9 Old 10-14-2011, 07:30 AM
 
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I would approach it from an anxiety POV rather than from a gifted POV. Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) is great for anxiety -- it's learning new ways of thinking about things so that one isn't so freaked out all the time. My advice would be to find a counselor who is experienced in CBT with children and try that for a while and see what happens.

 

This is a nice book:

http://www.amazon.com/Relaxation-Stress-Reduction-Workbook-Kids/dp/1572245824

 

but I think she sounds extreme enough that she needs to see a professional.

 

There are also meds for anxiety, and if my sweet little girl, who has a diagnosis of an anxiety disorder, ever gets as bad as she was 2 years ago, I'll will put her on meds. I didn't want to put her on meds (most parents don't want to) but with hindsight, I think I allowed her to suffer needlessly.

 

Anyway, I would start with CBT and go from there.


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#3 of 9 Old 10-14-2011, 07:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Awesome, thanks so much. Sometimes it's hard to know what to search. I'm going to the library today so I'll look for that book. Relaxation techniques are something I should look at closely!

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#4 of 9 Old 10-14-2011, 09:51 AM
 
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I would also look at it from a anxiety perspective.

 

We had very similar issues with DS when he was younger (he is now 10).  He wouldn't get any journalling done because it was supposed to be "his best" so he would erase and erase and erase (til there were holes in the paper) because it wasn't his best.  We actually had him see a therapist who helped him with a variety of techniques to keep his anxiety in hand.  We actually also retained him in second grade to put him with the peer group he felt more socially connected with (which has also had issues, but I think was, overall, the better option).

 

I think that 7-8 may also be a tough age, though, because my DD also had some issues with depression at that point (she was closer to 8+).

 

Good luck!


 

 

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#5 of 9 Old 10-14-2011, 10:00 AM
 
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There's some really great group kids' programs out there for anxiety.  My son was in "Cool Kids" and the mix of the parents getting their own group session to show us how to mentor the kids, and the children learning how to think realistically (they called it detective thinking) about fears with other kids with similar issues really helped. DS's anxiety is primarily around perfectionism like your daughter, and I found that learning to look at things from a realistic rather than a worst case scenario disaster point of view helped not just with anxiety, but in how he looked at goals and expectations.  CBT was enough to hold him over for a few years, but this year the anxiety intensified again with added issues around the pre-teen changes, and he is on medication this year, and for him it's working well.  I think it's best to go by what your child needs. 

 

Along the relaxation angle, exercise can be good for helping handle anxiety, as can a non competitive hobby.


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#6 of 9 Old 10-14-2011, 01:15 PM
 
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From a lay-parent perspective I agree it could be anxiety related. 

 

My dd1 has what I call "anxious tendencies". We did have her evaluated because she was having trouble joining in in school when she was younger. It was really pretty severe. She mostly meowed and refused to do things that were asked of her  (small private school, so they let her meow a lot). I held off on having her eval'd until the school requested it at 3rd grade because I really didn't think she would cooperate with an eval. Her "anxious tendencies" don't make her carry worry around with her like typical anxiety can, though. Hers comes into play more when she is confronted with a situation that makes her feel anxious be it a math problem or not finding something where she expected it or being left alone and she melts down and has a big fat freak out. They are much less common now, though, than they were. She will always have some issues around this, however. It's just the way she's wired and she's been this way since birth.

 

However, even though, I liked the psychologist we went to see she did not see the anxiety the way I do and dd1 didn't meet the official criteria for an anxiety diagnosis. She did however give her a Non-verbal Learning Disorder label and said she met the criteria for ADHD. I can sort of see some of both, but I think it's really the "anxious tendencies" that cause her to fidget and lose focus. If she's anxious about the math problem she loses focus and squirms, but if she's not anxious she can concentrate and be still. She's certainly not hyperactive. She definitely doesn't have to be on the move all the time. She also refused to do a portion of the IQ test that she can do perfectly well. So those results were skewed. 

 

Her reactions often seem over the top. My sister who is a psychologist (teaches now, used to work with sexually abused kids, so not really educational issues) said she sounds "emotionally reactive". You might google that phrase.  

 

She basically refused to read until she was in 3rd grade although she's highly verbal. She reads fine now (5th grade), but she was too anxious about it before. She hated the whole sounding out the words concept and flat out refused to do it and used to dissolve into a puddle of tears in the early grades. She just freaked out. But now she's reading Harry Potter 4.

 

She's not a perfectionist, though.

 

For your dd's writing issues—can you somehow take the pressure off for her? Maybe show her lots of different hand-writing styles? She might be able to draw her letters better than write them. I always try to give my kids permission to do things differently, saying things like "Most people do it this way, but some people do it differently like this or this or this". I know with a perfectionist permission might not be enough, but if you reiterate it enough it may help. My kids (I have a 7 yr old dd, too) neither one wrote or write the "correct" way. They won't start at the top of the line to form their letters. Dd1 may start at the top some now that she's older. They both like to make As shaped like this "a"  rather than the  circle with the line down the right side kind of "a". 

 

I've been meaning to re-enroll my dd in some yoga classes. You might look into that if it resonates. 

 

hth


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#7 of 9 Old 10-14-2011, 05:06 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cahootzz View Post

My 7 year old daughter is quite "quirky". We went to a fancy educational pychologist for testing, but she has such anxiety that we had no idea how she did. The official results were that her verbal iq was over 150 and there was no official iq assigned. We have discovered a bad fit with this practitioner and are seeking help with her anxiety and perfectionism. She hits herself but answers well when she is pushed to advanced level questions. She refuses to write, continually erasing every line she makes until the paper rips and she throws herself down. The original educational psychologist suggested that she was manipulating us to avoid work and that I should take parenting classes because I am too permissive. I have seen her breakdown in activities she chooses so I have trouble believing it's avoidance behavior. I have been searching for help (maybe with occupational therapy) for her writing. As I searched her high verbal iq, her anxiety and perfectionism, your forum came up. I'm looking for any and all advice right now. Thanks :)


Is there a specific reason she needs IQ scores now? Is she showing signs of a learning disability or are you looking into a particular school that only takes scores? You may want to wait. She may do better in a couple years when she's older and you've had some time to work on her anxiety issues. There are ways to get accommodations in school without testing and frankly, any score you get now isn't going  to be accurate. One of my SIL's had this issue when she was your DD's age. Very high anxiety, they stopped her IQ test part-way through because she was falling apart. She still ended up with enough points for "high average" though they were pretty sure she is highly gifted liker her other siblings.

 

We really had good experience with occupational therapy and my youngest. It really helped us target his trouble areas and gave us practical ways to help him. It made a huge difference in all our lives.

 


Married mom of two, DD 17 and DS 13.
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#8 of 9 Old 10-14-2011, 06:14 PM
 
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On which test did she score a 150 in verbal?

 

Anxiety is a tricky thing - does the child have anxiety because they have an anxious temperament, or is the anxiety the outcome of some other challenge?  The best strategies that would work for your child will be discovered when you know what you're dealing with.  CBT is the preferred modality for treating anxiety, has high efficacy, and can be implemented with a cliniican or by a parent with the right tools available.  But if the anxiety is the result of a hidden learning difference (thinks like sensory, auditory processing etc), you'll have to deal with those issues to bring her relief.


Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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#9 of 9 Old 10-29-2011, 10:21 PM
 
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I recently did a "qualitative assessment" for giftedness for my daughter.  My daughter, like yours, can be a perfectionist, and because she was only five, I didn't want to subject her to the IQ testing if I didn't have to.  Here is a link to information about the assessment created by Annemarie Roeper

 

http://www.gifteddevelopment.com/PDF_files/AMR%20Symposium%20Paper.pdf

 

Anyway, my daughter actually enjoyed her conversation with the assessor- I had to fill out tons of forms- but in the end, I felt like the assessor was able to give me so much information about my daughter.  She stated that based on her assessment (and she is considered an expert in this form of testing gifted children) my daughter would fall into the profoundly gifted range.  She also gave me a ton of information on some of the other issues that I had been concerned about with my daughter- such as getting occupational therapy to deal with sensory integration issues.  She gave me suggestions on parenting, educational resources, and explanations for so much of the things that had been troubling me about my daughter.  She also helped me to understand what I would need to do to ensure that my daughter tested to her potential (my daughter is extremely creative- which can actually mess up some of the tests because she thinks a bit too outside the box). 

I still need to get her IQ tested, but feel like the qualitative assessment gave me a lot of things to work on to help my daughter.

 

I also want to say that I dislike that your psychologist characterized your daughter as "manipulative."  I feel like perhaps this person does not have a clear understanding of gifted children.  Most of these children are intense little beings- and to sum up their emotional experience as simply acting to get out of a task feels inaccurate. 

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