This past Friday (October 7) I spent the day at a conference hosted by the Wisconsin Association for Talented & Gifted (WATG). I attended in particular because of the keynote speaker Dr. Nadia Webb, whose talk entitled “Head, Heart and Hands: The Whole Gifted Child” touched on talented children who might also have ADD, ADHD, depression or a learning disability among other things (1). As she talked about the challenges and behaviors of these gifted children, I was struck by how eerily similar what she described was to what I experienced with my son.
I can imagine some of you rolling your eyes, because don’t all parents think their kids are smart? So let me say this, I don’t know if my son would qualify as “talented and gifted”, but he is smart. From the first grade, he has surprised his teachers with his “depth of knowledge” and his ability to recall verbatim things he has read or heard. He has also been diagnosed with ADHD. I have come to realize that this is how he was meant to be, but that ADHD doesn’t define him. He is still scary-smart; funny; a talented artist; has an amazing singing voice and a kind heart. Perhaps it is because his mind is going ten thousand miles-a-minute and he is trying to look at everything in every direction that he looks at things in ways I would never think of and notices little details that slip right past the rest of us. Continue reading “Intelligence and Medication: Treating the Gifted/ADHD Mind”