Understanding the Fears of Gifted Elders




     In our region of the country, tornado watches and warnings are frequent. Not surprisingly, one of children’s intense fears that parents of gifted children mention to me most frequently are tornados, even in very young children.  Gifted children, because of their intellectual abilities, develop a keen awareness of potential dangers earlier and more intensely than other children their age. Consulting the literature regarding gifted children, fears that are mentioned frequently among many gifted children are fear of death, separation from or loss of a parent, war, and other social and environmental concerns.

     Changing our perspective to consider gifted elders, again we see that their fears are different and also are much more vivid and intense than those of their age peers. For example, in an article regarding a national survey of the ten most common fears of seniors and elderly, the author lists both loss of…

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