Blog or Not?

A statistically improbable polymath's views on politics and culture.

Saturday, May 03, 2003
Would the psychiatrists please stop diagnosing every great scientist/world leader as (pick one: autistic, having Aspberger's Syndrome, ADD, manic-depressive, clinically depressed)

"The fact that you try to assign mental health disorders to great men is a sign of your underlying feelings of intellectual inadequacy"--hypothetical Freudian response.

There's a reason why very intelligent people sometimes act strangely in front of other people: Personal history. We grew up smarter than most people in our class and so never really fit in, therefore causing social awkwardness and a general retreat into ourselves. During class, we were bored, hence our stimulation-craving minds began to wander around. Maybe the reason for the multiple diagnoses of Einstein as having this/that disease isn't motivated by feelings of inadequacy--maybe it's a way to try to excuse society from almost losing a brilliant mind due to neglect. That way the psychiatrists can make money over-medicating gifted kids while our public school systems go down the drain.

One of my cousins was misdiagnosed with ADD when he was nine. At age fourteen, it became clear after an IQ testing that the real problem was he was borderline-genius. Now, at age sixteen, he spends most of his time with his heavy-metal band and isn't planning on going to college. I was lucky, I went to a school system that recognized gifted kids early and gave them tons of individualize attention. He goes to a school that doesn't have a gifted program. (Apparently, Illinois does not grant gifted children 'disability' status, therefore entitling them to individualized education programs (IEPs))

A trick of geography. That's what launched my cousin and me onto different paths. That and the stupid, antiquated system referred to as "local control", e.g. "Let's shaft the poor some more by depriving their kids of much of a shot at a better life."

So I say to you, all those psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychoanalysts who may be reading this blog--stop trying to pin mental disorders on the gifted. Give us the proper care and attention our minds need, and we'll be just fine.

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