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Counseling Practice of Anne Allanketner LPC
respect compassion insight creativity

Giftedness: Particular challenges, developmental issues  and relationship complexities


I specialize in the field of gifted development. Our culture sometimes identifies gifted children in school but fails to address the particular psychological developmental needs of gifted adults. Gifted adults may not realize themselves that their high levels of complex thinking can cause a sense of alienation from the mainstream. Gifted people may not identify themselves as gifted, but struggle nonetheless with the psychological symptoms discussed below.

Often people identified as TAG students in childhood grow up to face emotional challenges for which their advanced academic abilities have not prepared them. Isolation, emotional intensity, multi-potentiality, high sensitivity levels and issues surrounding over and under stimulation all impact day to day emotional functioning and relationship to love and work. The struggle to meet high standards of excellence and authenticity can stress work and relationship life.

Gifted clients need therapists and consultants that understand the particular impact of these issues on the resolution of trauma and the development of identity.

Although every client deserves an individualized treatment plan, gifted adults are especially likely to be unsatisfied with “one size fits all” methods. They may need to engage in dialog about theoretical perspective in order to feel safe and understood by the therapist.

The goal of therapy with gifted adults is to clarify the areas of giftedness which have been painful or limiting while supporting the idiosyncratic evolution of their creativity, vision and authentic relationships with others.

Gifted couples have all the normal challenges with commitment, communication and intimacy as well as needing to manage and mutually support the demands of two creative destinies, two visionary world views and two high intensity emotional systems.

I enjoy the added challenge and intensity of gifted clients. Their humor, wisdom and depth give expansion and dimension to the work of healing and maturation.