"I Blamed Myself." Mom Who Believed Her 5-Year-Old Son Has Autism Was Emotional When IQ Test Shows That He's Actually A Child Genius
There’s an interesting link between autism and genius. This is because, according to PsychologyToday, some of the symptoms may be similar.
For example, a child may be great at focusing on rare abstract situations and this could indicate a form of Autism Spectrum Disorder, but it could also mean the child has an exceptionally high IQ.
Other ASD symptoms such as behavioral issues and social interaction problems can also be similar to those of a high-IQ child who’s not receiving enough mental stimulation, which was the case for this young boy.
Autism and Genius
26-year-old Niki Wickham had resigned herself to the possibility that her five-year-old son was autistic or that his behavior problems were due to ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder).
Niki said that she and her husband suspected that Tyler was advanced early on.
He was walking at nine months, and unlike other babies who’d just shake toys, Tyler could sort shapes on his first attempt.
By the time he was two years old, Tyler could complete 100-piece jigsaw puzzles and had already begun to read.
All these were great signs but the issue was that Tyler was easily bored and when this happened, he began to misbehave. He would cry, scream, shove other kids and so on.
He couldn’t relate to other children his age who preferred to play with action figures when Tyler would rather learn from books.
I blamed myself for not teaching him how to play properly.
Soon, teachers began to suspect that Tyler could be coping with ADHD and autism. Niki said she started doing an online research and saw that many of the signs of these conditions were reflected in her son. However, there were some other symptoms that didn’t match.
When things didn’t get better as the years went by, a friend advised Niki to take Tyler for an IQ test. It was then that they discovered that at age five, Tyler had an IQ of 136.
Tears pricked my eyes as the child consultant for Mensa explained that my five-year-old son Tyler was in the top 1% of the smartest people in the country.
The "relieved and proud" mother then got all the materials she needed to ensure that Tyler was constantly stimulated which helped with his behavioral issues.
As much as I want Tyler to reach his full potential, I don’t want him to take his GCSEs early and I won’t be pushing him to be any sort of child genius. I just want him to be a happy child – which right now, he really is.
Comments and reaction
People were happy for the mom after reading their story but some mentioned the possibility that Tyler was still autistic despite his high IQ.
Worrying about your child is simply one of the aspects of being a parent. And usually, all any mom or dad wants to know is that their little one will be all right. In this case, a previously-confused Niki learned what was needed to help her son thrive and that made all the difference.