Gifted adults often experience great relief after taking an IQ test. However, many highly gifted adults only learn of their giftedness with an IQ test relatively late. Many of these late-diagnosed adults with a high level of giftedness have already taken an IQ test once, as a child in elementary school.
In most cases, the generation before 1980 rarely did anything with the results of an IQ test or even addressed when high giftedness was identified by an IQ test at all.
It’s common for highly gifted adults to wonder, before they get clarity from an IQ test, if and what might be wrong with them, if maybe even they suffer from adult ADD or ADHD. This is because the symptoms of high giftedness and ADD or ADHD often show a great deal of similarity. These include, for example, rapid distractibility during routine tasks or fluctuations in concentration when under-challenged or the tendency to get swamped because one cannot reconcile all one’s interests in the same day. The assumption of ADD or ADHD in adults is therefore not so far-fetched, but the conclusions one draws from it would be completely different! Children or adults with ADD or ADHD usually receive medication in the form of methylphenidate; highly gifted children and adults rather need a kind of instruction manual for their brain!
Highly gifted and highly sensitive?
If, alongside high giftedness determined by IQ test, a high sensitivity is also determined, the highly sensitive, highly gifted adult faces even greater challenges. It must be said that high sensitivity cannot be determined with an IQ test. To be more precise, apart from common lists of characteristics, there is still no serious test for high sensitivity, but one is counted as highly sensitive if one fulfills certain characteristics to a high degree, such as high empathy, high perceptiveness of all senses, perfectionism, high demands on friendships and relationships, search for meaning, sense of justice, value orientation, love of nature and animals, and the tendency to withdraw in order to protect oneself from stimulus overload.
Once the highly gifted adult has learned about his or her giftedness and perhaps even about his or her high sensitivity through the IQ test, he or she is often relieved to finally know what is “wrong” with him or her, but essentially working on oneself only begins after the IQ test. Apart from the examination and if necessary reorganization of the vocational and personal environments, it also sometimes becomes apparent that one isn’t actually content with an existing partnership, or that possibly there’s really none present! And all this only because of such a thing as an IQ test—that’s unbelievable!
Highly gifted adults after an IQ test and the search for their desired partner
If the highly gifted, highly sensitive adult then decides after the IQ test to go in search of their desired partner, it’s often like looking for a needle in a haystack. But to many this search seems very familiar, because the highly gifted adult remembers the past, when he was a highly gifted child who often wished for a suitable friend on equal footing and rarely found them—and when he found them, he did everything to keep this friendship with the other highly gifted child, and usually this one highly gifted child was enough and more friends weren’t even necessary.
But where can highly gifted adults now find their ideal personal partner? Well, some actually find each other during the IQ test or the course of their hobby, but that’s certainly an exception. Not for nothing, there are numerous dating agencies and online platforms for all possible search criteria, but so far there has been no social network for highly gifted people, someplace you can specifically look for a highly intelligent or highly gifted life partner. Sometimes it’s not enough to date someone with “class.” The relatively new online platform Clever People, a Social Network for Highly Intelligent and Gifted People, closes this gap. Before registration, both an identity check and proof of intelligence by means of an intelligence test with a minimum IQ of 120+ are required.
Highly gifted parents, highly gifted children?
There are certainly many pitfalls for highly gifted adults looking for a partner, and high intelligence alone does not make for the perfect partner. But let’s assume the needle in the haystack has been found and highly gifted adults become highly gifted parents with offspring. As you probably already guessed quite correctly, the probability is high that highly gifted parents will also have highly gifted children, because genetics are quite influential here. Many situations from the past will be repeated, but if you as highly gifted parents know about your own giftedness, you can deal with your highly gifted children quite differently and spare them your own ordeal from the past.
So, take heart! I’m convinced there’s a suitable partner for everyone, also for highly gifted people, so don’t settle for an 80% solution—look forward to finding your highly gifted dream partner soon!
Dr. Karin Joder, gifted assessments, coaching and networking for the highly and neurodiversely gifted.