Psychotherapy for the Gifted

Gerald Grobman, M.D. | Madelon Sann, LCSW

Giftedness: The Double-Edged Sword

How does this powerful asset cause existential crises and existential depressions?

Thinking, understanding, learning, and remembering at advanced levels are the most obvious signs of giftedness and the basic building blocks for precocious accomplishments. Precocious accomplishments however, can be traumatic for many gifted individuals. Their hunger for more success can be blocked by worries they have already outgrown their current resources. Their desires to develop more of their gifts often conflict with feelings of shame that they’ve lost their idealism, lost their altruism, and instead have become arrogant and narcissistic.
This is the most common pathway to an existential crisis and an existential depression.

Learn More about gifted individuals, their problems, and how to manage and treat them.

The Chronic Stress of Unresolved Conflicts

The Chronic stress of Unresolved Conflicts about giftedness can lead to an existential crisis.

Gifted individuals are unusually adept at finding creative solutions to complex intellectual puzzles. Unfortunately this ability rarely can be used to accurately identify the true nature of their emotional conflicts about being gifted let alone resolve them. Although they may be quite sensitive to the emotional conflicts and needs of others, their “extra–sensitives” often intensifies their own.

Emotional/Intellectual Asynchrony

This asynchrony in emotional and cognitive development can prevent certain gifted individuals from embracing their giftedness and may make them more prone to feelings of alienation, disillusionment detachment, isolation and a sense of meaninglessness- the symptoms of existential crises and existential depression.

Turning against giftedness

When some gifted individuals become overwhelmed by their painful and confusing emotional responses to their gifteness, the success it brings and its effect on others they can dismiss the pride and joy of being gifted. When they turn again their giftedness it is the beginning of an existential crisis and an existential depression.

Effortless Success

For gifted individuals, arriving at inventive answers to complex problems can seem like child’s play. Spontaneous leaps of imagination and insight can open the door to more exciting and creative breakthroughs but these intuitive processes can also feel unworthy of pride and self esteem. This unresolved conflict can become another pathway to an existential crisis and existential depression.

Learn more on our Gifted Individuals page

We Are Your Resource

Our observations and conclusions are based on more than 40 years of psychotherapy counseling and advising gifted individual. This website is your resource for learning about psychotherapy for the gifted and much more. Here you will find our many publications, case studies, seminars, videos and an overall understanding of the power of being gifted, the deeper psychology of giftedness as well as the problems of being gifted and how to manage and treat them.

If you need more information or want a consultation feel free to Contact Us