The Highly Sensitive Person and Child

Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D. is a research psychologist, licensed clinical psychologist, a highly sensitive person and a best selling author. Her books are regarding highly sensitive adults and children. In her 2002 book, “The Highly Sensitive Child: Helping our children when the world overwhelms them,” she claims that back then, 20 percent of the population born are highly sensitive children. These highly sensitive children grow up to be the highly sensitive adults that we see today.

Dr. Aron has created a questionnaire of 23 true or false questions that will help parents, educators, doctors, grandparents ect decipher if you know a highly sensitive child. She also has her own website where a self-test can be taken to see if you are a highly sensitive person yourself. She describes the trait of high sensitivity with a hunger for down time and quiet, the almost constant awareness of others and concern for doing things right. Highly sensitive infants seem to notice every slightly new taste, every change in temperature; they startle at loud noises and cry easily when their feelings are hurt. She also states, “When they grow older still, they are often remarkable for their kindness and conscientiousness and they are upset by injustice, cruelty or irresponsibility.”

An essential chapter of Dr. Aron’s book on highly sensitive children is chapter 3: When you the parent are not highly sensitive, because she focuses on the advantages and problems that one might encounter raising a highly sensitive child or help those who were highly sensitive children understand what happened to them as a child when they did not have parents who understood who they were.